Denver’s Road Home- An Inspiring New Program For the War On Homelessness

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Denver’s Road Home was developed by the Denver Commission to End Homelessness.  Over 350 diverse stakeholders served on committees and more than 500 people came together over the course of 18 months to provide recommendations and feedback to the Commission. Denver’s Road Home: Denver’s Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness was approved by Mayor Hickenlooper in May 2005 and by Denver City Council in September 2005.

Denver is currently spending over $70 million annually on shelter, healthcare and other stopgap services for the homeless. Yet there are still over 4,600 homeless men, women and children in Denver.

Mayor John Hickenlooper and the Commission to End Homelessness, through a comprehensive community effort, have established a plan to end homelessness in the City & County of Denver.

Panhandling is a difficult issue faced by every major city.  People who panhandle may need help, but the experience of numerous social services agencies indicates that money given to individuals on the street often supports destructive habits, including alcohol and drug addiction.

The Downtown Denver Partnership encourages Downtown workers, visitors and residents to redirect their generosity to the institutions best suited to helping Denver’s homeless and struggling citizens.


Over ten years, Denver’s Road Home meet the following eight goals:

1. Permanent & Transitional Housing
Develop 3,193 permanent and transitional housing opportunities.

2. Shelter System
Make safe and legal shelter beds and activities for all populations both day and night until adequate permanent housing is in place including the addition of 110 beds in year one of the Plan.

3. Prevention
Provide Denver residents facing homelessness more tools to keep them from ending up on the streets or in emergency shelters.

4. Services
Provide better access to supportive services that promote long-term stability and improved functioning.

5. Public Safety & Outreach
Improve public safety by increasing homeless outreach efforts to reduce panhandling, loitering and crimes.

6. Education, Training & Employment
Assist 580 people who are homeless to obtain skills and knowledge necessary to participate in the workforce.

7. Community Awareness & Coordinated Responses
Build community awareness and support for coordinated responses to eliminate homelessness.

8. Zoning, Urban Design & Land Use
Reform Denver’s zoning, building and development codes to facilitate an adequate supply of emergency and affordable housing.

IE Denver readers, click here to learn how to get involved.

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