“If I didn’t have this housing I’d either be in jail or dead.”
When Leland’s employer went out of business, he fell into a “temporary rut,” started drinking, and finally ended up living under a bridge. “I got thrown off a bridge, got my finger chopped off, and had both hands broken while living on the streets.”
Sometimes those most in need of services are the most reluctant to request help. Highly visible on the streets, under bridges and in alleys, many chronically homeless individuals have severe mental and physical health issues. It takes all their strength to live through a day.
The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless’ Street Outreach Program helped Leland turn his life around. “Outreach workers kept in touch with me, and now I have my drinking under control and have my own place to live.” He is currently enrolled in a commercial baking class.
The Coalition's Street Outreach Program is part of a proactive effort to engage homeless people. Outreach offers crisis intervention, needs assessment, and connections to community resources.