Denver Rescue Mission is changing lives in the name of Christ by meeting people at their physical and spiritual points of need with the goal of returning them to society as productive, self-sufficient citizens.
The Mission is the oldest full-service charity in the Rocky Mountain region, meeting the needs of homeless men, women, and children since 1892. Until the late 1980s, DRM functioned primarily as a soup kitchen and an emergency shelter. In 1987, DRM staff realized that the organization needed to go beyond meeting basic, physical needs and address the underlying causes of homelessness. As a result, executive leadership developed the New Life Program (NLP), which has become a national and international model for substance abuse rehabilitation programs.
In the early 2000s, DRM began a capital campaign to develop The Crossing, a facility designed to provide transitional housing for homeless families and children as well as to expand the New Life Program. After its completion in 2005, the expanded facility allowed DRM to increase its nightly capacity from 200 to 800 beds.
In November 2012, DRM acquired Open Door Mission in Fort Collins, just nine miles from our long-term rehabilitation facility at Harvest Farm, and renamed it Fort Collins Rescue Mission (FCRM). FCRM now provides beds for up to 80 homeless men and women each night and manages the Steps to Success Program-a short-term program offered to help people become productive, self-sufficient citizens.
DRM continues to serve our homeless neighbors through the Lawrence Street Community Center which opened in November 2015. The community center provides a safe, drug- and alcohol-free place for people experiencing homelessness in our community to go during the day, along with a courtyard area, showers, bathrooms, washing machines, drinking fountains and a large dining room where we serve three warm meals a day. The community center is also ADA accessible to ensure we can accommodate everyone entering our facility seeking help.
This year, Denver Rescue Mission is celebrating its 125th anniversary! Explore our history at www.denverrescuemission.org/timeline.
"Being pregnant on the street was terrifying," Donna says as she begins to share her story. "I wondered every day if I would lose the baby. I was constantly stressed. I even slept in my car for a few weeks before I was humbled enough to ask for help from anyone." Donna lived at a homeless shelter downtown for three months before she finally discovered Denver Rescue Mission's New Life Program at Champa House. Now, she's a proud New Life Program graduate and works full-time at Champa House as a Treatment Coordinator helping other homeless moms find renewed hope and life-changing support.
To read more of Donna's story, visit www.denverrescuemission.org/story/donna.