Project Homeless Connect is a one-day event at the Colorado Convention Center that provides wrap-around services, support, and resources to individuals experiencing homelessness or housing insecurity in Denver.
This year, in conjunction with Denver’s Road Home, over 900 Mile High United Way volunteers assisted 1,600 community members in accessing an array of services including ID services, housing services, resume workshops, vision check and healthcare, veterans services, childcare, petcare and more from over 100 providers. 300 job offers were even made so, even with the heavy snow fall on October 10, volunteers were thrilled to come out and support their community.
“Other than the cold weather, this is a really good day,” Yun Hui Kehoe, a volunteer and Mile High United Way Women United member shared. “I keep coming back to this event because of the people. Because of people like Amanda.” Amanda was Yun Hui’s buddy for the day, who she took around the convention center to help her find the resources she needed.
“I’m shy. So it’s nice to have a buddy that will tell me, ‘It’s okay, we’ve got this,'” said Amanda.
With Yun Hui by her side, Amanda was able to get a new haircut and look into some of the health resources that were available.
For Kimberly Smith, another Mile High United Way Women United member, this was her first year at Project Homeless Connect. “It’s amazing to see so many people, and to see all of the resource available. When you are blessed, it’s important to give back. It’s something we all need to do. Especially when you see that there are families here who need help. We can all help, everyone should volunteer.”
For many volunteers, it’s a feeling of doing good for the community that keeps them coming to this event every year.
“This is my 5th year doing this event. I work downtown and see some of these people every day. It’s important for me to take, at least, one day a year to give back. I believe it goes a long way. A hat or some gloves, especially on a cold day like this, can change a life,” said Marty Mahalchick, a Mile High United Way Catalyst Society member.
“For me, it feels good to volunteer and I see it as a duty to give back to my community. Mile High United Way helps people when they need it most, and I’m lucky that I work for a company that shares these values. UPS is supportive of its employees choosing to give back to their community. It’s why I’ve been doing this for 5 years,” said Jane Spivack.
At the end of the day, it’s about giving back and serving the community where we live and work. As several attendees shared, it’s about paying it forward.