Posts by Admin

Rallying Around Denver’s Homeless During the Bomb Cyclone

Man boards bus to shelter during Bomb Cyclone                                                                                   (Photo by: Hart Van Denburg/CPR News)

The bomb cyclone was a real threat to our neighbors experiencing homelessness, and it was all hands on deck at Denver Rescue Mission as we prepared to greet people escaping the blizzard. Our staff worked diligently all day to make sure every single person had a place to go to stay safe from the storm. At Denver Rescue Mission, we know how important emergency services are to ensure safety, dignity and hope for those experiencing homelessness. We are so thankful for every single team member who braved the storm Wednesday in order to ensure our guests were taken care of. In particular, we are thankful for Tracy Bunn Brooks​​, Jerred Powell​​ and the Women and Men of the Denver Rescue Mission who didn’t call out on a snow day, who didn’t ask to go home early, but who packed a change of clothes EXPECTING to sleep at work.

It’s times like Wednesday that remind our guests and staff what an outstanding community Denver is.  We had an incredible outpouring of help from other organizations in our community. Here are just a few of the heroes from Wednesday’s crazy storm:

  • Christopher Conner​​ and Denver’s Road Home worked tirelessly with Denver County Emergency Operations Center when transportation to remote shelters was cancelled due to the high winds and the power went down at both of our downtown facilities mid-day. They spent hours working on alternative sleeping accommodations, transportation options, emergency heat and lighting, etc.
  • Commander Aaron Sanchez and Denver Police District 6 showed up early asking how they could help, and stuck around until everyone was taken care of.
  • Denver Sheriff Department, Denver Police Department, Denver Parks and Recreation showed up with their fleet vehicles to transport guests to the various remote shelters.
  • Tammy Door and the Downtown Denver Partnership showed up asking how they could help, and ended up purchasing pizza for 700 people when our kitchen ran out of prepared food.
  • Xcel Energy – Denver Colorado who worked tirelessly in the cold and wind to get the power restored at Lawrence Street Community Center – Denver Rescue Mission and Lawrence Street Shelter.
  • Lisa M Cooper​​ at Samaritan House and Christina Carlson​​ at Urban Peak who checked in throughout the day looking for ways to help in the midst of their own expanded operations – and to others that showed up or called that I’m not aware of.

When we come together as a community, we can have an incalculable impact on our homeless friends and neighbors. That’s what happened on Wednesday, and we look forward to our continued partnership with you, whether in rain, snow, or sunshine!

A Common Thread: Brooks’ Story of Recovery

Brooks' story

 

Brooks’ Story

If you’ve ever had a friend, a sibling, a parent, or a significant other, you know that people are different. We disagree; we quibble; we even get annoyed with each other. And despite all of our differences, we share a common thread. Perhaps many threads, but two in particular. We are all human—image bearers of our Creator. And because we’re human, at some point in our story, we have all experienced pain.

Pain looks different for each of us. Bullying. Divorce. Debt. Cancer. Unemployment. Loneliness. Depression. Loss. No matter what our pain looks like, it’s real, it’s difficult and it’s often one of the most defining events of our life story.

Brooks came to us eager to share his story. And why not? He just graduated our New Life Program. When we gave him the space to share, the first thing he spoke of wasn’t his recent achievement or that just two weeks prior he moved into a home after being homeless. The first thing he shared was his pain and the experience that eventually led him to us. “I’d been married a long time,” he said. “When I found out she was cheating on me, I was hurt. I didn’t know what to do. I mean, how are you supposed to know what to do when that happens? I started drinking, and I went down and down and down. I lost my job because all I thought about was masking the pain. I would think about what happened and start drinking. Then, I’d go to sleep, wake up and start drinking, again. I had no interest in life anymore.”

Eventually, Brooks’ drinking became so rampant that he started sleeping in his car. One Friday morning, he found himself standing at the corner of Broadway and Park Avenue. “I remember standing there on the corner of the street,” he said. “I looked up at the sign, the “Jesus Saves” sign. For the first time in my life, I felt like God was speaking to me, like He was inviting me inside.”

 

“I had no interest in life anymore. I was down; I was hurting. But Denver Rescue Mission, and their supporters, gave that back to me.”

 

Brooks went inside and he sat down in our chapel. “Well, it just so happens that there was a graduation ceremony that day,” he said.

The graduation was for the Mission’s New Life Program graduates and there was a man giving a speech. Brooks can’t remember what the man said, exactly, but he remembers being moved. “I sat down in the chapel and listened to him talk. I remember feeling inspired; he was speaking truth. After the ceremony was over, I went up to him and started talking to him. He prayed with me and he told me about the program and encouraged me to enroll. That’s how I ended up at Denver Rescue Mission. Come to find out that the man I was talking to was the CEO, Brad Meuli, and I didn’t even know it!”

That was the day Brooks joined the New Life Program. And in December of 2018, he graduated. “A lot of us have fallen down, we’ve experienced pain and hurt, but the Mission is here to pick you back up, and that’s exactly what they did for me.”

A lot of us will have people come alongside and help us navigate pain well. But there are some people who will struggle to get through it, who will seek to cope with it using drugs and alcohol. Many of the people who come to us for assistance are hurting and reaching out for help in the only ways they know how.

When we’re hurting, we all need a little help to get back on our feet, and that’s okay. It’s hard, and for some, it’s a long road. At the Mission, we specialize in coming alongside people, empathizing with their pain, showing them avenues to get through it, and encouraging them along the way.

But it’s not just us. It’s you, too. As a supporter, you are a part of the work we do. You play a pivotal role in the transformation of peoples’ lives, people like Brooks. “I had no interest in life anymore,” he said. “I was down; I was hurting. But Denver Rescue Mission, and their supporters, gave that back to me.”

 

You Helped Brooks Overcome His Pain…

Help more people overcome theirs by giving today

Change Lives

 

Five New Life Program Components

 

1

SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT

In the first few months of the program, participants attend morning devotions, addiction classes, Bible studies, group seminars, and weekly church services. As they progress, participants are encouraged to invest in spiritual support by connecting with local churches and church-related groups.

2

CASE MANAGEMENT

Chaplains provide case management through weekly appointments that help participants address issues and struggles. Some issues may be spiritual, physical, psychological, legal, financial, medical, educational, and/or employment-related. Chaplains are the biggest advocates for our participants. They set goals and give each person help and encouragement along the way.

3

CHRISTIAN COUNSELING

Participants explore their life story and search for how it fits into God’s larger story. One of our Licensed Professional Counselors or Counseling Interns guides conversations to promote faith and courage, an understanding of suffering and an understanding of how emotions interconnect with spiritual, psychological and physical health. It is a journey into personal wholeness for each of our NLP participants.

4

LIFE SKILLS, EDUCATION AND CAREER

Participants have an opportunity to further their education through our Life Skills, Education and Career Modules. The Education Coordinator assesses basic academic needs (literacy, GED preparation and basic computer skills) and creates an appropriate educational plan, if necessary. Participants also enroll in a Career Development Program through which they explore finding, applying for and keeping employment that matches their skill set and abilities.

5

WORK READINESS

Participants are assigned to a work readiness team where they work a variety of jobs around the Mission. They’re also assigned a supervisor who works with them to ensure they are growing in their employment readiness and skill set. In this part of the program, we aim to impart solid work ethics, positive experiences and valuable soft skills. We also help participants find meaning and value in their work and help them balance work with other areas of their life.

Read the Full Newsletter

March 2019 Newsletter Cover

Also in this issue:

  • Letter from the CEO
  • Staff Spotlight
  • Double Your Donation
  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Letter From the CEO: March 2019

Brad Meuli

 

Letter from the CEO

Dear Friends,

When you get up in the morning, you just never know how God might use you. The day might seem very normal— a stop at your local coffee shop, work, and then, maybe a stop at the grocery store or the gas station on your way home. At the end of the day, you finally connect with your family for dinner and discuss the day’s activities.

It may all sound so ordinary, but you probably interacted with many people along the way, never knowing what impact you made—how God may have used you to help them. You were just going through your day, you were not trying to change the world or cure cancer (unless you are a cancer researcher, then good for you!). But you were part of people’s lives. You may have imparted something positive, something good that you said or did and you will never know it.

It’s humbling and exciting at the same time to know that I had a small part to play in the life of Brooks, that God used me for good when it seemed like a normal day to me.

We all have a chance, no matter how mundane our lives might seem, to interact with people in an encouraging, loving and Christ-like manner. We have the opportunity to impact people for eternity. Sounds pretty important doesn’t it? At the Mission, we call it changing lives in the name of Christ. Your donations, your time volunteering and your prayers all are making a difference in people’s lives. Your compassion is changing lives. We know this to be true because of your consistent support for the Mission. Thank you for partnering with us.

When I come to work in the morning I like to say to my staff, and I want to say to you now, “Hey, let’s do some good today.”

God Bless,

Brad Meuli

Brad Meuli President & CEO

 

Let’s Do Some Good Today

You can make an eternal impact in someone’s life

Give Now

 

Read the Full Newsletter

March 2019 Newsletter Cover

Also in this issue:

  • Brooks’ Story of Recovery
  • Double Your Donation
  • Staff Spotlight
  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Celebrating Our Incredible Mission Staff On #EmployeeAppreciationDay

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I was with my team, waiting for a meeting to start, when one of my colleagues walked into the room and started to tell us the story about his commute into the Mission earlier that morning. He took the same route he always does to get to our Admin building, but he recognized something different that day.

He was happily on his way in when he stopped at a stoplight. My colleague took a look at the drivers in the other cars beside him. Unlike him, they looked agitated, frustrated and unenthused.

It was his typical, every day drive. But that particular day really stuck with him, he said, because it made him realize just how fortunate he was to love where he worked and (more importantly) the people he worked with. When he finished telling the story of his commute, my other colleagues in the room—myself included—couldn’t help but chime in with agreeance. We all began to talk about how much we love working at the Mission, and we all mentioned that it’s the people we work with that make this place truly exceptional.

Every day, when I head into work, I always think about my colleague and his realization of how fortunate we are to work with such incredible people. As someone who handles the public relations, I’ve had a chance to meet with so many awesome employees—from our CEO to our New Life Program chaplains to emergency service coordinators on the front line.

It’s rare to find a place where you get to work with people from so many different walks of life and to see them blossom into the person God intended them to be. And, even though I’ve only been at the Mission since July I feel ever so lucky to have the opportunity to work with this Denver Rescue Mission family.

Today, on Employee Appreciation Day (and every day), I’d like to recognize our awesome staff who are the heart of the Mission and are changing lives in the name of Christ, every single day.

Local Community Leaders Continue Yearly Tradition With Pizazz!

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” — Winston Churchill

PRESIDENTS DAY BLOG
It’s a tradition that’s been years in the making. In honor of Presidents’ Day, the Mission welcomes Denver’s top executives to serve lunch at our Lawrence Street Community Center. This is a chance for CEOs, presidents and vice presidents to give back to their neighbors experiencing homelessness.

The once-a-year opportunity has become a staple event for many of these local leaders who look forward to helping the homeless community every year.

“A lot of us gather each year, on this Friday before Presidents’ Day weekend, and it’s a lot of fun. It’s a part of what we are at the Broncos. To be able to do this with other leaders in the community is fun for me. Brad Meuli does a terrific job here at Denver Rescue Mission,” Joe Ellis, President & CEO of the Denver Broncos, said.

Ellis, along with nine other top executives, served 300 guests a delicious plate of pork chops, gnocchi, fresh fruit and more!

 

Join us in thanking all of the following for helping us serve in honor of Presidents’ Day:

  • Joe Ellis, President & CEO, Denver Broncos
  • Dick Monfort, Owner & CEO, Colorado Rockies
  • Jim Kellogg, Vice President of Community Relations & Retail Operations, Colorado Rockies
  • Tami Door, President, Downtown Denver Partnership •Matt Hutchings, Executive Vice President & CEO, Kroenke Sports & Entertainment
  • Todd Broderick, President, Albertsons & Safeway
  • Rod Mickelberry, President, Cardel Homes Denver
  • Alan Sowers, President, Bauen Corporation
  • Joel Mecklenburg, President, First Integrity
  • Brad Meuli, President & CEO, Denver Rescue Mission