Denver Rescue Mission’s Young Professionals group is made up of a growing network of influencers in our communities. As the next generation of leaders, the group’s goal is to help people experiencing homelessness and addiction in our city change their lives.
Officially founded in January 2019, this group has quickly grown to a large network of active members seeking to serve and make a direct impact. Between monthly serving and networking opportunities, to raising funds for needs across the Mission, this group is dedicated to helping and building lasting relationships together.
Making an Impact in 2020
The Young Professionals Group has been busy in 2020, ensuring that goals have been met despite a worldwide pandemic. While the structure of some of our events have changed, the motivation and drive to support the Mission has never wavered.
Monthly Serve Events With Young Professionals
Monthly serve events have looked a bit different since March. Denver Rescue Mission, with the help of the City of Denver, moved emergency shelter services to the National Western Complex to allow more space for social distancing. We were able to provide 763 beds for men and three meals a day with food provided by the city.
Young Professionals, who were healthy and felt comfortable, were encouraged to join us for monthly dinner serves that included wearing masks, washing hands, wearing gloves, and other safety guidelines. Since there was such a high demand for volunteers at the complex, we were happy to be able to serve 850 meals on average during each serving opportunity.
Partnering for Mile High Meals Fundraiser
In May, Denver Rescue Mission partnered with Mile High Young Professionals (MHYP) for Mile High Meals; a fundraiser to raise money for meals provided by Footer’s Catering.
Thanks to the generosity of MHYP members, they were able to raise $6,030 and provide 753 meals to the Mission, which was greatly appreciated. Families and program participants at The Crossing were blessed by these amazing meals.
Father’s Day at The Crossing
Every June, the Young Professionals provide volunteers for the annual Father’s Day BBQ at The Crossing. The set-up was a bit different this year, with meals being catered and served inside The Crossing kitchen and gift bags being handed out to the men and families that participate in the New Life Program and the STAR Transitional Program. The volunteers had a great time providing more than 200 barbecue sandwiches, sides, dessert, and root beer floats and loved seeing everyone’s smiling faces (under masks of course).
Young Professionals Help Kids With Back to School Supplies
Over the past year, the Young professionals group was working diligently to put on their first fundraising event for the STAR Transitional Program, with a goal to raise money to provide backpacks and school supplies to the children at The Crossing.
The event was scheduled for April, however due to COVID, the event had to be cancelled but we moved the fundraising online and were able to raise $3,475. The money was used to buy 50 backpacks and accompanying school supplies for kindergarten through high school students. Because of the amazing response by our YP community, additional funds were able to support virtual learning equipment for the students and families.
A small group of volunteers participated in a backpack party in August that allowed them to stuff the backpacks with supplies, hand them out to the kids and provide an ice cream social. The parents and kids were very appreciative and seemed to have a great time.
Celebrating a Year of Impact
This past July marked the one year anniversary of Denver Rescue Mission’s Young Professionals Group and throughout all the changes, we have continued to keep volunteers informed of planned events and fundraising opportunities with monthly emails and newsletters. Our group continues to grow and we are very excited to see what the next year holds for us.
Written by: Amanda Kinderman, Denver Rescue Mission Young Professionals Communications Committee Lead