Ready to Work, Boulder Bridge House and homelessness

Ready to Work Boulder 

Upon entering the Bridge House you immediately get a sense that this facility is not like the other homeless facilities. After speaking with the staff and residents, you can already see the Boulder Bridge House addressing a crucial first step:; to address immediate survival needs of homeless individuals and provide resources which lead to employment, housing, personal stability and healing, providing for the immediate of homelessness to have a place to live away from the streets and a very comprehensive and practical approach in getting the homeless reintegrated into society. The terrible thing about discipline and tough-love shelters (with or without) is that they are not prepared as they transition away from homelessness.

In many cases, such as the  “5 points” Denver Rescue  Mission, Samaritan House, Step 13, and Salvation Army, is that the resident might not graduate from the program with the tools and resources to be a part of society outside of their walls of safety. As an example, Step 13 on Larimer Street is in the middle of a bar district. If you believe that “triggers” exist for the sober individual, imagine kicking a resident out in the brutal cold of a Colorado winter, right into a place that the struggling alcoholics might encounter. And, if you also prescribe to the idea of alcoholism as apart of the “disease model”, then they may not be ready, or lack willpower, to not relapse.

The Boulder Bridge House serves as a shelter combined with their work program, and detox. I was told that there are only a few of these Ready to Work programs in all of the United States. The program at first sounds like the “housing first” model or maybe even the New Genesis program, but it’s really not the same.

Some elements of the program are:

1. NO such thing as “one and done” like other programs in Colorado. The Samaritan House, Step 13, Salvation Army, and the Denver Rescue Mission all have the “one and done” no tolerance policy in place, so if you mess up, you must pack and leave the programs. The Boulder Bridge House Ready to Work program does NOT do this. Many of the residents who live in this facility are felons that come direct from prison or jail, and many residents are simply homeless individuals who can’t seem to shake the homelessness, thus they turn to substance abuse, using drugs or alcohol to cope. 

The case managers and managing staff never kick anyone out if they have a relapse, because relapse is often something that happens for those who have had decades of substance abuse problems. Combine that with the fact that many of the residents just find it hard to function with others again. (prison/jail/recovery)

2. They have a mentor program. Lots of individuals in Boulder county are mentors to help guide any resident who wants to work in any particular field, at no cost. This is not like the “AA” sponsor.

3. Homelessness makes it very difficult to apply for jobs, so the Ready to Work program has its OWN work program, so the residents will have no problem getting work and start earning money. There are classes that teach job skills, budgeting, and they require a minimum of %30 saved each month. Their employment specialists are networked and will be hard at work in the communities getting you the job you want. 

4. Temporary place to live, while they work on finding you long-term housing. Nearly ALL of the residents who are in this program can live in the facility for one year, and with the help of the community, if your situation needs, they can help pay your rent for up to 2 years. The building holds up to 40 residents.

5. The Bridge House program also runs a kitchen which allows resident immediate job placement if they are interested. Their Community Table Kitchen offers culinary arts training and so much more.

6. Food is FREE. All of the food is donated daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

7. Ready to Work provides a pathway to self-sufficiency for homeless individuals. The Resource Center makes services for homeless individuals more accessible & effective.

8. The current residents are:


Over 13% of residents are veterans who have served our country, but who are struggling to stay on their feet. RTW: Many are not getting the benefits they are entitled to under law. We help veterans to process the paperwork so that they can receive the medical and financial assistance they deserve.


RTW: Approximately 30% of the people that walk through our doors are women. The issues homeless women face around safety and security are different from those facing men.

Have mental health  problems

There are estimates that nearly 40% of the homeless population suffers from some kind of mental illness.  The Ready to Work program leaders see this statistic reflected in our clients, most of whom either don’t know they are ill or are unaware of services that can help them. The program has a mental health outreach worker who meets with people one-on-one.  They also have group counseling through their weekly HOPE Group. We provide funds for psychiatric prescriptions and work with their partners at Clinica and Mental Health Partners to get people the services they need.

Though anyone can come from out-of-state, local Boulder, Colorado residents make up a large part of the residents at Bridge House. While many people think the homeless population flocks to places like Boulder for services, a large majority are locals. A full 60% of their residents are originally from Boulder County. The staff and program managers work hard to instill a sense of community at Bridge House for all their clients. They have regular holiday gatherings, art classes, and regular meetings with clients to gather feedback and suggestions.

RTW: The number of people seeking our services continues to grow every year. In addition to the chronically homeless, we are seeing a significant number of newly homeless that have lost businesses, homes, and families in the economic chaos. In addition, we have more families coming to Bridge House and our evening dinners than ever before; at least one family with children per week.

At the Resource Center (job assistance), they provide opportunities for each person to find his or her path to self-sufficiency. But no path is the same. The try and customize their program to a wide variety of people, from all walks of life. Everyone is welcome and the Bridge House goal is to connect every person with the services they need. The number of people seeking  

Bridge House services continues to grow every year. In addition to the chronically homeless, they are seeing a significant number of newly homeless that have lost businesses, homes, and families in the economic chaos. In addition, we have more families coming to Bridge House and  evening dinners than ever before; at least one family with children per week.

At the Resource Center, they provide opportunities for each person to find his or her path to self-sufficiency. But no path is the same. A wide variety of people, from all walks of life.  Their published data made available to the public shows data from 2015.

**Overall Bridge House data reveals:**

* 1,730 individuals came to Bridge House and Resource Center for case management services

* They successfully connected 81 people with housing either through transitional programs or through rent assistance

* They helped 139 of their residents get jobs

* They provided over 4,163 case management appointments for clients to access benefits such as food stamps, AND, SSI

**Their Ready to Work employment program shows:**

* 13 graduated the program and 7 have found employment

* 44 are still working into 2016

* $312,665 in earned revenue

* 90% attendance rate

* The Ready to Work House and Employment Center opened in August 2015 at a new facility that was donated. Purchased and renovated by Bridge House, this community houses 44 individuals working in the Ready to Work program. Ready to Work is Bridge House’s employment program that provides paid jobs, vocational training and support services to individuals re-entering the workforce and stable housing. Ready to Work is recognized as a best practice nationally and locally. 

* Ready to Work operates two businesses – a landscaping and supplemental sanitation service with contracts with City of Boulder Open Space Mountain Parks.

* Their residents get paid, transitional work as a stepping stone to mainstream work with the daily work assignments options in landscaping or food service offer: 

1. 16 positions, expanding to 48

2. Up to 29 hours a week, $8.23 hr for 4 months, raise to $9 hr

3. The assistance in building a resume and get references. Back to that thing about being a felon. If you are a felon or just got back in the community after doing time in prison or jail, then you know that getting reliable reference can be extremely difficult. And an additional aspect that can’t be understated is that they provide you access to clothing suitable for interviewing and for their jobs.

The Bridge House, Boulder work program offers: 

1. Community living for 48 people

2.  38 men, 10 women (male/females in the same building, with the men residing on the 2nd floor and the women on the 1st floor.)

3. Paid work for up to 29 hours a week

4. 3 meals a day (from donors and Community Kitchen)

5. On site laundry

6. A Computer lab, and library

7. 24/7 access to staff or volunteer support

8. Build rental history

9. Room and board of 1/3 of income up to $60 per week

10. Sobriety required (must submit to random a breathalyzer or urinalysis)

11. Pass health screening (if you come in “hot” for a substance, they may require you to be at detox a few days, so you are not 

disqualified for being admitted)

12. Earn and save money (minimum %30)

13.  They work hard to keep this program going, so they want you to succeed, they merely ask a commitment to 9 to 12 month program, and are required to obtain employment after 7 months working with their Ready to Work crew. Many of the staff there were homeless at one point, so they are very knowledgeable about the struggles someone homeless might encounter.

14. An Ecopass during paid employment phase. That Eco-pass alone is worth over $1,000 and is provided immediately so resident can ride any RTD bus or RTD lightrail with no restrictions. This helps if you are a work intern aving to take RTD buses to the facility. From Denver, the ride is about 35-40 minutes on the Flatiron Flier .

These are the opinions of a shelter for the homeless. You would think that they might listen to criticism and understand why people have so much negative things to say, but if the “Catholic Charities” as your back, as is the case with the Samaritan House shelter in the 5 points of Denver, Colorado, then there is no need or incentive necessarily that you must examine and correct. So far, the Boulder Bridge House,The relatively new Ready to Work program for Boulder Colorado that offers employment and shelter for the homeless has never missed a beat in getting things done. The downtown Denver shelters are an interesting breed of shelters. That 20 million+ that the government awarded the shelters for the homeless on March 8, 2016 after evicting them from laying on the sidewalks, will do nothing. The military veteran offices are on the second floor, and do you know what they did for me in the 5 months, pretty much nothing. Find a job? No help. Non-slip boots to work in a kitchen…the case manager wet on vacation so I had to beg another VA rep to provide them so I would not be sent home for “uniform standards” unacceptable. In addition, the best work program in the United States if definitely in Boulder, Colorado at the Boulder Bridge House which has a very high success rate and is unique in roughly 4 or 5 locations.

Ready to Work slide notes: Employment – 70% of trainees who enter will obtain full-time mainstream employment after participation in Ready to Work Savings – 100% of trainees will save up to 30% of their income, approximately $1,000 after 6 months Sobriety – Trainees will remain clean and sober and set standard for other Bridge House clients Identification – 100% of Ready to Work participants will have proper ID. Clean ,00% will improve employability by working with case management to address barriers such as criminal background and child support Work works in you dont what do Ready to work is ready to show you – Presentation 

Ready to work presentation repost: RTW Presentation via @denverdonate

Homelessness and Colorado

Colorado’s homeless, according to a fresh report, are being “criminalized” by local bans and laws that restrict their access to, and use of, public places.

No Right to Slumber: Criminalizing Homelessness in The state of Colorado, ” an 87-page survey by the University of Colorado Denver and destitute advocacy groups, was released Tuesday.

“This is a statewide concern, ” said Terese Howard, an organizer with Denver Homeless Away Loud. “Homelessness is all over the place. “

The study includes a survey of 441 homeless people across the state, summarizing police and judicial engagements, as well as “violations of basic rights. “

Among the list of study’s conclusions:

– 73 percent were turned far from shelters with no alternative location to go.

– 63 percent found difficulties accessing clean normal water.

– 36 percent reported being arrested for a “crime of homelessness. inch

– 70 percent reported being ticketed for a “crime of homelessness. inches

The report noted that cities are passing progressively more local laws — geared towards the homeless — banning activities such as community sleeping, sitting, loitering and panhandling, in line with the executive brief summary.

Using vehicles as refuge is among prohibitive laws being questioned, as is prohibiting the employment of anything at all, other than clothing, as shelter against elements.

In 2012, Denver passed a “camping ban” ordinance, barring the homeless from sheltering in public places.

Additional cities that contain enacted “anti-homeless” laws are Arvada, Amanecer, Bennett, Boulder, Colorado Suspension systems, Durango, Fort Collins, Thornton and Wheat Ridge.

Nathan Woodliff-Stanley, executive director of the American Civil Protections Union of Colorado, identifies such ordinances as “a race to the underside, very well designed to force the homeless to “move on. “

“The net result is it criminalizes a whole class of people, ” he said. “It’s discriminatory enforcement. inches

The study’s release happens a week before proposed express legislation, House Bill 1264, goes before a panel.

Known as the “Colorado Right to Rest Take action, ” the bill would “establish basic rights” for the homeless, including “the right to use and move freely in open public spaces without discrimination. 

The bill would also help protect the protection under the law of the homeless to freely eat in public places spots and protect rights to occupy a legally left motor vehicle.

Boulder Ready to Work Program:  Boulder: 80025, 80301, 80303, 80304, 80305, 80310, 80503

Information feed:  

Meeting Archives 2016:



Note: Similarities between communist China and Denver

Something interesting happened early March this year. I was in Boulder when I read that the Denver police were going to “evict” the homeless from the streets. If you are familiar with the 5-points area, that is where the Denver Rescue Mission, Samaritan House, Salvation Army (and men’s overflow shelter, as well as where Step 13 is. Honestly, where did they expect people to go? The next day there was an announcement that the city or state was going to award millions of dollars for the homeless efforts.

I don’t believe any of those government officials have even been to the 5 points in Denver. During the real cold days, the homeless just lay on the streets like dead bodies. But be careful, because Denver has this convenient law, that says if you “lay your head” anywhere, you can be arrested for “camping”, and so the law enforcement — depending on their mood, just arrests homeless people, I have seen it in the Civic Center Park and on Colfax. I want to point out something else that is very real, that people probably don’t think about, because they haven’t lived outside of the U.S. — I lived in Japan for over a decade and several years all across China. In Japan, you don’t see homeless on the streets. But, the real comparison I want to make is communist China and Denver, Colorado.

You see, in Denver, particularly around the 16st mall, you an’t just “go to the bathroom” in facilities, you must first buy things — and everything is more expensive downtown Denver. I literally had to stop and buy food 3 times in one afternoon, so I could be able to use the bathrooms. TOY CAN’T FIND A PLACE TO GO TO THE BATHROOM. Guess where you also can’t find a place to go to the bathroom — COMMUNIST CHINA. That’s right, that backward, uncivilized type of mindset exists in these two places, communist China and communist Denver. Land of the free? Home of the brave? Yea, ok, I don’t know what fairy tale world people have had fed into their heads, or what delusional mode of thought people have developed.

It doesn’t matter if you payed your taxes diligently for 30 years r no years, you are a criminal if Denver decides that you are. And yes, the bathroom situation is directly tied to the homeless situations, because Denver doesn’t want the dirty reality shown to visitors — because over $1 billion dollars per year comes in through 16th street mall alone.

 More information outlining various aspects of this program.


Revisions previous:


Samaritan House Shelter in Colorado on Lawrence Street and their assessments **Shelter that gives an informal lodging from being homeless** The Bridge House mission is to address prompt survival needs of destitute people and give assets which prompt livelihood, lodging, individual steadiness and mending. The project was worked with a “Work Works” rationality, accommodating the quick of vagrancy to have a spot to live far from the lanes and an extremely far reaching and useful methodology in getting the destitute reintegrated into society. The loathsome thing about order and extreme affection covers (with or without) is that they are not set up as they move far from vagrancy. Much of the time, for example, the “5 focuses” Denver Rescue Mission, Samaritan House, Step 13, and Salvation Army, is that the occupant won’t not move on from the project with the instruments and assets to be a piece of society outside of their dividers of security. As an illustration, Step 13 on Larimer Street is amidst a bar region. In the event that you trust that “triggers” exist for the calm individual, envision kicking an inhabitant out in the severe chilly of a Colorado winter, directly into a spot that the battling heavy drinkers may experience. What’s more, in the event that you likewise endorse to the possibility of liquor abuse as separated of the “infection model”, then they may not be prepared, or need resolve, to not backslide.  

Presently the Boulder Bridge House has begun a safe house joined with their work program that is very interesting. I was informed that there are just “four” of these Ready to Work programs in the greater part of the United States. The project at first seems like the “lodging first” model or perhaps the New Genesis program, however it is definitely not.  

There are a couple of special variables that make this project effective where others have fizzled. 

 1. NO such thing as “one and done” like different projects in Colorado. The Samaritan House, Step 13, Salvation Army, and the Denver Rescue Mission all have the “one and done” no resilience strategy set up, so in the event that you botch up, you should pack and leave the projects. The Boulder Bridge House Ready to Work program does NOT do this. A large number of the inhabitants who live in this office are criminals that come direct from jail or imprison, and numerous occupants are just destitute people who can’t shake the vagrancy, along these lines they swing to substance misuse, utilizing medications or liquor to adapt. The caseworkers never show anybody out in the event that they have a backslide, on the grounds that backslide is frequently something to happen, and a considerable lot of the occupants simply think that its difficult to work with others again. 

 2. They have a tutor program. Loads of people in Boulder province are tutors to manage any inhabitant who needs to work in a specific field, at no expense. This dislike the “AA” support. 

 3. Vagrancy makes it extremely hard to apply for occupations, so the Ready to Work program has its OWN work program, so the inhabitants will have no issue getting work and begin acquiring cash. There are classes that show work aptitudes, planning, and they require at least 0 spared every month. Their job authorities are arranged and will be working diligently in the groups landing you the position you need. 

 4. Provisional spot to live, while they chip away at discovering you longterm lodging. About ALL of the inhabitants who are in this system can live in the office for one year, and with the assistance of the group, if your circumstance needs, they can pay your rent for up to 2 years. The building holds up to 40 occupants. 

 5. The Bridge House program additionally runs a kitchen which permits occupant quick occupation position on the off chance that they are intrigued. Their Community Table Kitchen offers culinary expressions preparing thus a great deal more. 

 6. Nourishment is FREE. The majority of the sustenance is given day by day for breakfast, lunch and supper. 

 7. Prepared to Work gives a pathway to independence for destitute people. The Resource Center makes administrations for destitute people more open and powerful. 

 8. The present inhabitants are: 


 More than 13% of inhabitants are veterans who have served our nation, yet who are attempting to keep focused feet. Numerous are not getting the advantages they are qualified for under law. We help veterans to handle the printed material with the goal that they can get the therapeutic and money related help they merit. 


 Around 30% of the general population that stroll through our entryways are ladies. The issues vagrants face around wellbeing and security are not the same as those confronting men. 

 Have emotional wellness issues 

 There are appraisals that almost 40% of the destitute populace experiences some sort of maladjustment. The Ready to Work program pioneers see this measurement reflected in our customers, the greater part of whom either don’t know they are sick or are unconscious of administrations that can help them. The system has a psychological well-being effort laborer who meets with individuals one-on-one. They additionally have bunch advising through their week by week HOPE Group. We give assets to psychiatric solutions and work with their accomplices at Clinica and Mental Health Partners to get individuals the administrations they require. 

 In spite of the fact that anybody can originate from out-of-state, nearby Boulder, Colorado occupants make up an extensive part of the inhabitants at Bridge House. While numerous individuals think the destitute populace runs to spots like Boulder for administrations, an extensive dominant part are local people. An entire 60% of their inhabitants are initially from Boulder County. The staff and program administrators strive to ingrain a feeling of group at Bridge House for every one of their customers. They have normal occasion social affairs, craftsmanship classes, and standard gatherings with customers to assemble input and recommendations. 

 The quantity of individuals looking for our administrations keeps on developing each year. Notwithstanding the constantly destitute, we are seeing a critical number of recently destitute that have lost organizations, homes, and families in the financial bedlam. Also, we have more families coming to Bridge House and our night suppers than any time in recent memory; no less than one family with youngsters for every week.  

At the Resource Center (employment help), they give chances to every individual to discover his or her way to independence. Be that as it may, no way is the same. The attempt and modify their system to a wide assortment of individuals, from all kinds of different backgrounds. Everybody is welcome and the Bridge House objective is to interface each individual with the administrations they require. 

 The quantity of individuals looking for Bridge House administrations keeps on developing each year. 

 Notwithstanding the constantly destitute, they are seeing a noteworthy number of recently destitute that have lost organizations, homes, and families in the monetary bedlam. Furthermore, we have more families coming to Bridge House and night suppers than any time in recent memory; no less than one family with youngsters for each week. 

 At the Resource Center, they give chances to every individual to discover his or her way to independence. In any case, no way is the same. A wide assortment of individuals, from all kinds of different backgrounds. 

 Their distributed information made accessible to people in general shows information from 2015. 

 **Overall Bridge House information reveals:** 

 * 1,730 people came to Bridge House and Resource Center for case administration administrations 

 * They effectively associated 81 individuals with lodging either through transitional projects or through rent help. They helped 139 of their inhabitants land positions 

* They gave more than 4,163 case administration arrangements for customers to get to advantages, for example, nourishment stamps, AND, SSI 

**Their Ready to Work vocation program shows:** 

* 13 graduated the system and 7 have discovered vocation 

* 44 are as yet working into 2016 

* $312,665 in earned income 

* 90% participation rate 

* The Ready to Work House and Employment Center opened in August 2015 at another office that was given. Acquired and remodeled by Bridge House, this group houses 44 people working in the Ready to Work program. Prepared to Work is Bridge House’s occupation program that gives paid employments, professional preparing and bolster administrations to people returning the workforce and stable lodging. Prepared to Work is perceived as a best practice broadly and locally. 

* Ready to Work works two organizations – a finishing and supplemental sanitation administration with contracts with City of Boulder Open Space Mountain Parks. 

* Their occupants get paid, transitional work as a venturing stone to standard work with the day by day work assignments alternatives in finishing or sustenance administration offer: 

1. 16 positions, growing to 48 

2. Up to 29 hours a week, $8.23 hr for 4 months, raise to $9 hr 

3. The help with building a resume and get references. Back to that thing about being a criminal. On the off chance that you are a criminal or just got back in the group in the wake of doing time in jail or correctional facility, then you realize that getting dependable reference can be to a great degree troublesome. Furthermore, an extra angle that can’t be downplayed is that they give you access to attire appropriate for talking and for their occupations. 

 In this way, fundamentally they give everybody: 

1. Group living for 48 individuals 

2. 38 men, 10 ladies (male/females in the same working, with the men living on the second floor and the ladies on the first floor.) 3. Paid work for up to 29 hours a week 

4. 3 meals a day (from contributors and Community Kitchen) 

5. On location clothing 

6. A Computer lab, and library 

7. all day, every day access to staff or volunteer backing 

8. Fabricate rental history 

9. Food and lodging of 1/3 of salary up to $60 every week 10. Collectedness required (must submit to arbitrary a breathalyzer or urinalysis) 

11. Pass wellbeing screening (on the off chance that you come in “hot” for a substance, they may oblige you to be at detox a couple days, so you are not precluded for being conceded) 

12. Gain and spare cash (least 0) 

13. They endeavor to keep this project going, so they need you to succeed, they only ask a pledge to 9 to 12 month program




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