I am proud to report that at their last meeting, the Denver City Council approved a proclamation naming February 23rd as Warren Village Day – which happened to be the official kick-off of our 40th Anniversary. The Council applauded our many years of service and the impact we have made for the most vulnerable families in the community.
We are thrilled to continue giving a hand up to single parent families and wish we could do more. We would like to serve more families and help families in a more significant way. We recently realized that some parents, after leaving our program, found jobs, but then fell into what is called, “The Cliff Effect.” Many times the wage increases they received for doing well in the workplace were offset by cuts in public assistance that exceeded their raises. So, although they were doing everything right, their financial situation was worse than before. We believe securing the RIGHT job, with a livable wage, will help address that problem and we are launching a new program to meet that need. You will read more about it in this newsletter.
At the All-Star Breakfast, I referenced a study that had been completed on homelessness 9 years ago. The fastest growing aspect of the homeless population at that time was families with children, and they comprised 50% of all the homeless in the Denver Metro region. Today, the largest percentage of the homeless population continues to be families with children, but the percentage is 61.2%. These figures are clearly going in the wrong direction.
We need your help to serve more families that are homeless and help them gain access to safe shelter, a caring place for their children and opportunity to get a good job so they can support their families. I asked our breakfast audience, and will also ask you, to embrace the MVP in you to support us in this work.
• M: Share your MONEY – whether it’s $25 or $25,000, so we can not only continue our work, but find a way to serve more families.
• V: Use your VOICE – share your outrage about homeless families – and particularly the most vulnerable single parent families. Talk to your neighbors, your legislators and City Council about this issue.
• P: PARTICIPATE in the work – by volunteering your time and expertise to help families move forward.
Even if all three are not possible, please help in any way you can. Together, we can bring those numbers down and give more families a hand up, and out, of poverty.
Thank you for your support of our efforts!