We believe in the right and need for all young people to achieve the American Dream.
We’re continually updating this page with resources and information on organizations that address economic inequality and lift families and teens out of poverty. If you have a suggestion of a link, resource or other information that should be posted here for the benefit of youth and families, please contact us.
How can we expect any student or young person to succeed in school, if they don’t have a place to live? Homelessness is at the top of the list of stressers that prevent young people from excelling in school. Further, the homeless are some of the most marginalized people in society, shunned from most public places and often treated with disdain. How can we help those facing these challenges overcome them and find a safe space to restart their lives? Below are videos, links and resources on homelessness in Colorado.
Suggested Videos on Homelessness
Wondering what you can personally do to help the homeless in the moment? This video from a couple in Tacoma, Washington outlines how you can build a backpack of much-needed food and personal care items for homeless people for under $20.
What does it look like to think creatively about the housing crisis, the biggest problem currently facing our city? In the 1980’s Ronald Reagan used the recession as an excuse to cut spending on social services, including mental health and housing, which is the primary factor in the population of people experiencing homelessness rising from 200,000 to more than 1.5 million today. It is becoming increasingly incumbent on local municipalities in Colorado to tackle this growing problem at the local level. This talk focuses on the myriad of solutions that exist, both short- and long-term, and what barriers stand in our way.
School District Contacts for Homeless Students
Find more information here, including contact information, on how each Colorado school district supports homeless students and families.
Organizations Fighting Homelessness in Colorado
Colorado Coalition for the Homeless works collaboratively toward the prevention of homelessness and the creation of lasting solutions for homeless and at-risk families, children, and individuals throughout Colorado.
Denver Homeless Out Loud was born in 2012 as a reaction to Denver's "urban camping ban." The group works to both amplify the voice and defend the rights of people experiencing homelessness, and is made up of people who have experienced or are currently experiencing homelessness.
HomewardBound of the Grand Valley, based in Grand Junction, provides a safe and healthy step for homeless adults and families on their pathway to home.
Pueblo Rescue Mission, based in Pueblo, provides comprehensive human services that seek to help individuals experiencing homelessness, poverty, or addiction onto a pathway to recover.
Urban Peak operates in Denver and Colorado Springs, and provides a full convergence of services for youth ages 15 through 24 experiencing homelessness or at imminent risk of becoming homeless.
YCD Workshops on Economic Inequality
Below is a sampling of workshops YCD has offered at prior conferences and events around the issues of economic inequality. Click on any workshop title to read more about the session, the presenter, and reviews from our participants.
Is paying for college scaring you from applying? Does the financial aid process freak you out? In this session, we will break down it down into simple steps. We will talk about in-state tuition, grants, scholarships and loans, and share some creative ways to save money and pay for college. Learn about common mistakes and hurdles and how to avoid them. Bring your cell phone or laptop or a notepad because you’ll get some websites with resources. This session will cover financial aid options for DACA, Dreamer and undocumented students too.
If you were to go homeless, how would you survive? What would you include in your backpack? What would you keep and what would you need to leave behind? Where would you eat and how can you make sure you get nutritional balance? How would you make friends?
We will teach participants what is involved in homelessness for a deeper understanding of this marginalized and misunderstood population.
Join this interactive discussion of the economic challenges facing our local community. We’ll review research Homeward Alliance and other organizations have gathered to show the effects of rising living costs, lack of access to living wages, and insufficient mental/physical support. Throughout the workshop, we will engage in open dialogue about where we see ourselves within this socioeconomic spectrum, and how we can act as neighbors to acknowledge, empower, and engage those who may be lost in that scale.
For the last 25 years Joe Chavez has consistently received excellent ratings from those who attended this workshop. Here are some reactions: “Freaking awesome!” “What an eye-opening experience” “Turned my life around” You will hear a brutally honest presentation about racism, stereotypes, bullying, leadership, political correctness, family, education, beliefs and more. Recommended for those who truly celebrate diversity.
After an overview of homelessness in New Mexico, we’ll discuss different factors that commonly lead to teens and young people living on the streets. We then will use role playing and real-life scenarios to consider how we can make a difference in the lives of homeless people we encounter. Most of all, we’ll talk about shifting everyone’s perspectives to see homeless people as people first. Inclusion means all of us, including the homeless.
Founded in 1988, Urban Peak is the only non-profit organization that provides full services for youth ages 15-24 experiencing homelessness or at imminent risk of becoming homeless. After an overview of homelessness in Colorado, a panel of young people currently experiencing homelessness will share their personal stories about the barriers, struggles, and victories they encounter on a daily basis. They will also provide suggestions on what you can do to assist teens who may find themselves in similar situations.