A ten-year Army veteran, Scott served several tours of active duty.
He was tough. “I didn’t want to admit to having cracks in my armor,” Scott says. But after losing family members a few years ago, he was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Finding help was how he started to bounce back. Scott worked to rebuild his life. He found his calling as a professional chef. He had a comfortable home shared with his best friend, and planned to have surgery to treat an old injury. Life was looking up.
Then a series of devastating losses knocked him flat.
A fire destroyed his home, all his possessions, and killed his best friend. Scott was suddenly homeless. Then COVID-19 hit and shutdown orders left him unemployed. He couldn’t work, he was without a home, without a job, and without hope.
Looking back, Scott now understands, “I was one emergency from becoming homeless or losing everything.”
Scott connected with the VA to apply for housing and arrange to finally be able to have the surgery he had needed for so long. After the medical procedure, he was unable to be discharged without
help during his recovery. Scott was referred to the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, and we placed him in emergency housing under the Coalition’s Protective Action initiative. This program provides housing and recuperative medical care for older individuals and those with underlying illnesses and injuries. Coalition staff also helped Scott apply for disability benefits, which
will help him stabilize until he’s able to work again.
Scott is healing from his injury and the trauma of losing his home and friend. Once he’s able, Scott will again move into permanent housing.
As the COVID-19 emergency subsides, Scott plans to return to work as a chef.
“I love to cook. Food is one thing that brings people together.” he says
It’s safe to say that the last 12 months have been like no other.
No description could overstate the impact of a shrinking supply of affordable housing, the COVID-19 pandemic, and economic downturn. We’ve seen growing encampments of homeless individuals, an alarming increase in family homelessness, and an imperative to protect the most vulnerable in order to protect our entire community. This is the first time since the Coalition was founded in 1984 that a public health crisis has placed focus so squarely on the humanitarian crisis of those experiencing homelessness.
With your support, we were prepared for this extraordinary year and have been proud to
contribute to the safety of all of Denver by caring for our vulnerable neighbors.
Your gift in this moment is more important than ever.
With your help, and our partnerships at all levels of government, the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless helped more than 20,000 people last year with housing, health care, and supportive services, moving them along a pathway to permanent stability. We worked to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among our homeless neighbors, many of whom turned to the Coalition for the first time.
The last twelve months have upended the Coalition’s revenue streams while demanding our increased efforts to care for the most vulnerable. Your generous gift supports the housing development, medical and mental health care, and supportive services that helped thousands stabilize. We are grateful to you.
Scott’s story is one of Home, Health, and Hope. Because of your generosity, Scott is rebuilding
his life despite terrible setbacks. Your gift today ensures that others like Scott can receive the
care they need to overcome tragedy and build stable lives.