Denver Rescue Mission Posts

Running for a purpose—Rino 5K is here!

Lace up your shoes and get ready to take part in one of the best races of the summer! The RiNo 5k is a great way to spend quality time with loved ones while giving back to the community.

Denver Rescue Mission will be receiving a portion of the proceeds raised during this exciting race through one of the most artistic neighborhoods in Denver. Don’t miss out on this exciting opportunity taking place Saturday, July 27th.

The RiNo 5k is a perfect opportunity for runners of all levels. Participants have the option to walk or run during the race. The event will start at 27th Street and Larimer Street. Individuals can pick up their registration packets at 7:30 a.m. and the race will begin at 8:30 a.m.. For more fun, stay for the award ceremony just after the RiNo race ends.

Everything You Need To Know About Running the Rino 5k!

  • WHAT: RINO 5K
  • WHEN: Saturday, July 27th at 8:30 AM
  • WHERE: The walk and run starts at 27th and Larimer Street
  • WHY: The Rino 5k will be giving a portion of its proceeds back to Denver Rescue Mission to help thousands of men, women and children experiencing homelessness.
  • HOW: Register at https://www.rino5k.org/

Keep Calm and Paddle On!

When I signed up to go white water rafting with Denver Rescue Mission, I could barely contain my excitement.

I couldn’t wait to spend the day exploring on the Arkansas River, taking in new sights and experiencing something new. I couldn’t wait for the beauty I’d embrace as we rafted through Buena Vista. I couldn’t wait to spend a day with colleagues and New Life Program participants, taking on rough rapids and soaking in the sunshine. I. Couldn’t. Wait.

But, while the nature we were surrounded by was breathtaking, the beauty of the entire trip couldn’t compare to the spectacular reaction of our program participants.

After we tackled the intense rapids, we all huddled onto the yellow school bus to head back to town. A New Life Program participant sat down in front of me on the bus and turned around smiling ear to ear. What he said to me next has resonated with me since.

Our New Life Program participants get excited as they prepare to take on a day of white water rafting earlier this June!

“I can’t believe I just got to do that,” he said with joy. “Never in my life would I have been able to experience something as cool as that. I could have only dreamed of something like this.”

We are SO grateful to Wilderness Aware Rafting for donating the day of rafting to the men in our New Life Program. It’s because of community organizations like this that we are able to not only serve the men in our New Life Program, but help them also have new and exciting adventures in life.

His words stuck with me because I felt they really represented what we do at the Mission every day. Besides the special trips and adventures like this that we are able to provide to program participants, we are able to give men, women and children opportunities to change their lives that many of them would never expect to receive. Oftentimes, the people whose lives we touch don’t have the tools or resources to navigate the rough waters of poverty and homelessness, let alone have experiences like this once-a-year rafting trip.

At the Mission, we are infamous for our 900,000 meals and 400,000 nights of shelter each year—but I think it’s also these special times and every day experiences we are able to provide for our guests that make our work worthwhile. It’s this everyday magic that we have with our guests and participants that far exceeds the beauty of any earthly thing—and that’s truly beautiful!


Letter from the CEO: July 2019

Brad Meuli

 

Letter from the CEO

Dear Friends,

Recently, I had the great honor of being asked to give the benediction at Denver Seminary’s graduation. I used a Franciscan Benediction that I believe is appropriate for a seminary graduate but it speaks to what we do at the Mission. This simple prayer has come to mean a lot to me, and I wanted to share it with you:

Franciscan Benediction

May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and the exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection and starvation, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.

And May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in the world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.

We ask these things in Jesus’ name.

Amen

God Bless,

Brad Meuli

Brad Meuli President & CEO

 

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Also in this issue:

  • RiNo 5k
  • Wilderness Aware
  • A Chaplain’s Care
  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Be The Example: Steven’s Path to Sobriety

Steven's story

Steven pictured with Chaplain Dan Dilley

Steven’s Story

365—the number of days Steven had been sober. As he sat on the bus back from his 12 Step Fellowship meeting, he rubbed his one-year chip between his fingers and contemplated how far he had come in that time to overcome his addiction to cocaine.

He had been in the Mission’s New Life Program (NLP) for 10 months and had found a temporary job. He felt fulfilled in the work he was doing, but was told a week prior that his time at the company would be ending soon. Steven had just accomplished something incredible—an entire year of being sober—yet, the thought of his job ending was weighing heavily on his mind as he took the bus back to The Crossing.

In the midst of all his thoughts, he hopped off the bus to catch the next connecting bus back. When he got off the bus he saw an old friend of his smoking cocaine.

“I’m watching him, and I knew that bus was notorious for drugs,” Steven said. “I went up to him and said ‘man, let me have just one hit of that.’ Of course, when you take one hit, it flips the whole script.”

“Be the example–that’s the best way I can help people experiencing homelessness.”

Steven didn’t return to his room at The Crossing that evening. Instead he spent the next three months using drugs, sleeping at the Lawrence Street Shelter or his car, and staying on the streets. He found himself once again at a low point in his life, not sure which direction to take.

“I remember sitting outside the Lawrence Street Shelter thinking how lost I had become. I thought, I’m better than this, a homeless crackhead. I realized the path I’m on will only lead to death,” Steven said.

Steven tried several other programs around Denver since he left, but always felt Jesus pulling him back to the Mission. After a great deal of thought, Steven was determined to re-enter the New Life Program. He admitted that his first time in the program his mindset wasn’t clear and he was simply just going through the motions.

“It’s all about Jesus,” Steven says. “You know the name of the Mission’s building downtown? It’s ‘Jesus Saves.’ That’s it—Jesus saves us!”

Feeling humbled by the past three months, Steven applied for the program and was accepted back in November of 2018. The Park Hill neighborhood, where The Crossing resides and where Steven was headed back to, was one he was all too familiar with—one he had known since he was 5-years-old. Steven’s childhood home sits nestled only blocks away from the program he was about to re-enter. It was at that house where Steven grew up, where he had his first smoke of marijuana, and where his life began to turn toward a path of drugs and addiction. However, heading back to this neck of the woods would be different this time around.

This time, he was set on being successful in all aspects of the program for himself, his family, but most importantly for his relationship with Jesus. He had seen really big miracles from people who followed the program. And, he was determined to be one this time around. In fact, in 2018 84 men graduated from the New Life Program.

Since Steven’s back in the program, he’s worked diligently in all aspects of the NLP to better himself by staying sober, learning how to become self-sufficient and becoming closer to Jesus. The computer, resume and authentic manhood classes are several learning opportunities that Steven says have helped him as he moves toward the life he has always envisioned. More importantly Steven says his relationship with his chaplain, Dan, is something that truly helped him become successful this time around. Steven often says, “I couldn’t have gotten this far without my chaplain.”

In April, Steven entered the working phase of the program and secured a job at a restaurant in downtown Denver—something he could only dream about several months prior as he sat outside the Mission addicted to drugs. When he’s asked about how he overcame so much hardship, he doesn’t skip a beat and says, “The New Life Program.”

With four months left in his program, Steven is embracing his new job opportunity and the expertise the NLP staff has to offer. He has high hopes of being the best version of himself in order to be the example for others who went through the same life experiences as he did.

“Be the example—that’s the best way I can help people experiencing homelessness,” Steven says. “If they see me doing good and they know I was out there on the streets with them…maybe someone will say, I can do it too. To someone who is struggling—there is a solution.”

You Helped Steven Overcome His Struggles…

Help more people overcome theirs by giving today

Change Lives

A Chaplain’s Care

For many of the men in the New Life Program, having access to a chaplain to lead and guide them is key to their success. Steven says he wouldn’t be where he is today without his chaplain, Dan Dilley. Learn more from Dan about how a chaplain plays an integral part in a participant’s journey.

HOW DO CHAPLAINS BUILD RELATIONSHIPS WITH NEW LIFE PROGRAM PARTICIPANTS?

The chaplain gets to spend literally hours and hours with the person, discussing things, as they are comfortable, at every end of the spectrum. In doing this we start to build trust and relationship. People don’t care what you know until they know that you care.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR A PARTICIPANT TO HAVE A CHAPLAIN AS A PART OF THIS JOURNEY?

The chaplain prays for the participant on a regular basis. We like to say, “I can’t give you a new life but I know the One who can, and I’m going to point you to Him. His name is Jesus!” Plus, the chaplain is engaged in helping the men with important things like getting an ID, getting a Driver’s License, getting teeth, getting glasses, obtaining needed services, dealing with debt, dealing with legal issues, and the like.

WHAT IS IT LIKE BEING STEVEN’S CHAPLAIN?

Being a chaplain is the purest form of ministry I’ve ever been involved in. There are people waiting in line to allow us to tell them about the One who can give them a new life! That is amazing. What a privilege and honor to do this! Lord, help us to do this in a way that brings glory to Your Name!

 

Read the Full Newsletter

Also in this issue:


  • Letter from the CEO

  • RiNo 5k

  • Legacy Giving

  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Save the Date! 7th Annual Sporting Clay Classic

 

Do you enjoy shooting clay targets? If you do, you don’t want to miss this special event where you can “ready, aim, fire” for a good cause and compete for $2,100 in prizes!

You’re invited to participate in Denver Rescue Mission’s 7th Annual Sporting Clay Classic on Friday, October 18, 2019 from 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This popular event is located at Kiowa Creek Sporting Club in scenic Bennett, Colorado.

Registration will begin on Monday, August 12. Visit DenverRescueMission.org/SportingClayClassic to register or check back here for an update on our blog.



Station Sponsorships are available at $1,000 and include corporate logo placement and registration for five shooters. Team registration is $500 for a team of five. Individuals are invited to participate at $100 per person, and will be paired with other shooters to form teams of five.

Prize values have been doubled this year! Top three individual shooters and members of the top three teams will each win a gift card to Cabela’s valued at $50, $100 or $200.

Proceeds from this event go to benefit the work of the Mission, helping people experiencing homelessness through emergency services, rehabilitation, transitional programs, and community outreach.

Mark your calendar for registration starting on August 12!

Hit a Home Run Against Hunger

Join the Colorado Rockies, King Soopers and Denver Rescue Mission for the “Hit a Home Run Against Hunger” drive.

Join the Colorado Rockies, King Soopers and Denver Rescue Mission for the “Hit a Home Run Against Hunger” drive.

Please bring nonperishable or canned food items to the Colorado Rockies game on Friday, June 28 to help feed the poor and hungry in our community!

And when you shop at King Soopers from June 23 through July 20, be sure to show your support by making a monetary donation as you check out.

For more information please contact Lisette at Lisette@DenRescue.org or 303.313.2414

Break the Stigma: Myths About Homelessness

 

HOMELESSNESS: Myths Vs. Facts

 

PEOPLE EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS DON’T WANT TO GET A JOB.

The Fact is…

Experts at the National Coalition for the Homeless estimated that between 40 and 60 % of the homeless population in the United States have jobs.

However, most of those jobs are entry level, minimum wage positions. In Denver, if a person is making minimum wage, he or she would have to work 74 hours a week to afford a modest, one bedroom rental home at fair market rent. Even if a person did “roll up their sleeves” and work 74 hours a week, other obstacles still remain—groceries, utilities, transportation, insurance, child care, etc. Many people in our city simply do not make enough income to afford a rental apartment or home without some form of longterm assistance. This is why we offer a program called Family Rescue Ministry, which provides first month’s rent and deposit along with a mentor team. So, although research continuously shows that people experiencing homelessness have jobs, unfortunately, just getting a job isn’t the end-all solution.

 

HOMELESS PEOPLE ARE ADDICTS, SO IT’S THEIR FAULT THEY’RE HOMELESS

The Fact is…

Of the people enrolled in our programs, the number one reason they give for becoming homeless is job loss.

Other common reasons people become homeless are lowered wages, a health care crisis, increased rent, or a family emergency. For those who do struggle with addictions, mental illness is often at the root of their challenges. People living with mental health disorders are particularly vulnerable to drug and alcohol use. Rather than addiction causing homelessness, it’s more accurate to know mental illness can cause addictive behaviors and unhealthy coping mechanisms, which can lead to homelessness. Many of the people we serve tell us they grew up in homes with abuse, neglect and trauma. In critical development years, they never learned healthy coping skills or how to develop supportive relationships.

 

HOMELESS SHELTERS ARE JUST ENABLING HOMELESSNESS

The Fact is…

Our shelter system is designed to empower people Who are experiencing homelessness to pursue a path off the street.

Without shelters, people experiencing homelessness would not have basic resources for survival. Emergency services provide safety, dignity and hope. Places like our Lawrence Street Shelter and Lawrence Street Community Center provide these basic resources—meals, showers, laundry, drinking water, restrooms, electrical outlets, and safe places off the street and out of the elements. All of our emergency services facilities are staffed with employees who engage with guests, fostering relationships and offering information about our programs and services like Next Step, which is designed to guide people to find permanent and sustainable housing.

 

HOMELESSNESS IS SUCH A BIG CHALLENGE. THERE’S NOTHING I CAN DO.

THE FACT IS…
You can do something.

Donate today and bring hope and lasting change to the lives of people experiencing homelessness.

Change Lives

   

Read the Full Newsletter

        Also in this issue:
  • Letter from the CEO
  • Father’s Day Celebration
  • Hit a Home Run Against Hunger
  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Letter from the CEO: June 2019

Brad Meuli

 

Letter from the CEO

Dear Friends,

Recently, there were some phone calls that came into St. Francis Center, a day shelter not too far from the Mission, and Denver Rescue Mission. The calls were like some others we have received in the past, where we are told that “our people on the street” are creating problems of one kind or another. (The caller meant the homeless people we serve.) FOX 31 News heard about this, and I was asked to comment.

In the interview I said, “People that are homeless are all our people. They’re not just Denver Rescue Mission people, they’re not just St. Francis people, they’re everybody’s people. And what we need to do is continue our efforts to make sure that we take care of people who are out there experiencing homelessness.”

Really, we are all God’s people, and he has called us to look after those who are struggling, who are poor, who are hungry, and destitute. Because of this, we are all in this together. No one organization, no one ministry, no one city department is responsible for solving the challenges surrounding homelessness. We have to keep working on this together, grinding it out and trying to impact one person at a time.

Most of us have a family member, or a friend, or know someone who has been homeless, who has lost their job or suffered from an addiction that has caused all kinds of problems. The truth is, these folks, are just like you and me. Most of us are just one paycheck or one catastrophe from homelessness. This is where we step in at Denver Rescue Mission, when there is no place else to go, we are the light at the end of the tunnel. Please continue to join us in making a difference, in providing hope to…our people, your people, my people. We are in this together.

God Bless,

Brad Meuli

Brad Meuli President & CEO

 

Help God’s people today

Donate to make an impact

Give Now

 

 

Also in this issue:

  • Letter from the CEO
  • Father’s Day Celebration
  • Hit a Home Run Against Hunger
  • Why Denver Rescue Mission Matters

Download Now

Mother’s Day Magic!

Moving Forward

“Mom turned upside down is WOW!”

The definition of mom in the Webster’s Dictionary reads, “One’s mother.”

But for those who work at Denver Rescue Mission, we believe the definition of “mom” goes much further than that. In fact, we’d go as far to say the moms we serve embody true love and compassion. They are some of the strongest females we know. They are beautiful inside and out. And, they are our heroes day in and out.

The mothers we work with have overcome many obstacles in their lives. Despite these challenges, they’ve worked hard to get onto the path of self-sufficiency and into the STAR Transitional program or Family Rescue Ministry program.

The Mission staff member’s aren’t the only ones who think our moms are the best of the best. But, their very kids believe their moms are just as spectacular as us.

2

When you ask 6-year-old Araiah what her favorite thing about her mom is she says, “I love her 100%. She feeds us and does fun stuff with us.”

 

2

10-year-old Alaiza also had a sweet thank you message for her mom too, “Thank you for helping us and keeping us healthy and safe.”

 

We are in awe of all the moms we serve not just this Mother’s Day, but every single day. From our Denver Rescue Mission family, we are wishing the best Mother’s Day ever!

“We Are Columbine!”

Twenty years ago on April 20, 1999, news broke out across the nation of the tragedy at Columbine High School.

I was just ten years old at the time, living in Ohio, more than a thousand miles away from the events that took place here in Littleton. I was actually out of school for the day at a doctor’s appointment. We had gone out to lunch at a local pizza place when we heard the news and someone turned on a television in the corner. I still remember seeing the kids running out of the building—a video caught from a helicopter at the scene—and feeling a strange mix of confusion and fear. My mom was probably more devastated than she let on, and I’m sure she was glad we were not in school that day.

Other staff here at the Mission lived in Colorado at the time and have described the incredible sadness and fear they experienced in the days and weeks that followed.


“I was born and raised in Colorado. We define so much of our history based on before and after Columbine. The entire state was grieving for this terrible tragedy,” Nicole Tschetter, PR & Media Specialist, said.

The event marked a turning point for many of us. In the weeks to come, we all heard the stories, especially of the kids who stood up for their faith despite the threats. They were incredible stories of faith amidst tragedy, hope in the sight of fear and strength beyond words.

Last weekend, a group of 14 students from Columbine High School showed us another bright light of hope as they served meals to people in need at our Lawrence Street Community Center.

“What an incredible morning here at the LSCC…these kids sang and danced the entire time, and lit up the dining room like the 4th of July,” Eric Korb, Volunteer Coordinator at the Lawrence Street Community Center, said. “It was so beautiful to watch our guests smile, laugh and applaud as breakfast was served. One gentleman stopped me, and beaming ear to ear, asked, ‘Why are they so happy?’ I told him that they are a bunch of kids just enjoying life, and he replied, ‘Well, seeing them happy, makes me happy.’”

And seeing the kids happy was a welcomed surprise considering the events of the previous week. “With all of the events of last week, coupled with the focus on the students, their school and the anniversary, they could have come in quiet and sullen,” Eric said. But they came in dancing, smiling, laughing, and as Eric put it, just enjoying life. They even sang while they served, including a few school chants of “We Are Columbine!”

We are so grateful to these students for their generosity in taking time out of their weekend to build into our community and serve those in need. The hope they displayed is a great reminder that we are all in this together, serving one another and bringing joy into the lives of those around us. Thanks, Columbine High School! Check out the Mission’s Facebook page for a short video showing the students singing and serving!