CHFA’s Direct Effect Awards recognizes 15 Colorado nonprofit organizations whose missions align with our work to strengthen Colorado by investing in affordable housing and community development. Learn more here.
Centro Humanitario Para Los Trabajadores (El Centro)
For the past 18 years, El Centro has been Colorado's only nonprofit dedicated to the rights and well-being of day laborers and domestic workers. Through innovative programming, El Centro has engaged more than 2,500 workers seeking resources and transformation. Through their participation with El Centro, workers gain tools to advocate for themselves with their employers and promote themselves as an invaluable workforce as they become leaders in their own lives and in the community.
El Centro will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to support their next phase of growth and expand access for workers in more areas across Metro Denver. El Centro is transitioning the organization from its current location in downtown Denver to the West Denver neighborhood. This move will allow more working families living in residential areas to access resources, participate in trainings, connect with employers, and gain valuable job skills.
Colorado Springs Fire Department - Community and Public Health Division
The mission of the Colorado Springs Fire Department Division of Community and Public Health is to "professionally and compassionately help people receive the right care, at the right time, in the right setting, with the right resources by providing integrated navigation."
They will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to support transitioning their Homeless Outreach Program from a pilot status to program status. The Homeless Outreach Program was created to understand the needs of those experiencing homelessness, define solutions, and begin connecting them to services that address their needs for housing, health care, and mental health care. The pilot has been successful in providing targeted and consistent outreach teams trained in paramedicine and mental health to high needs utilizers in the downtown Colorado Springs area.
In addition, Award funds will support the Colorado Springs Fire Department's Aging in Place Program, which helps seniors maintain independence in their own homes. Participants in the program receive care coordination, including health care, housing, transportation, food, and financial resources to help meet their physical and psychosocial needs. For those unable to age in place safely, the program will help the seniors transition to a different living situation where they are safe, protected, and able to thrive within the boundaries of their limitations.
Community Clinics at Memorial Regional Health/ Open Heart Advocates Program
The Community Clinics at Memorial Regional Health Open Heart Advocates program serves the Craig and Moffat County area by providing free and confidential victims' advocacy and services. Clients supported include victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, or crime. Open Heart Advocates operates a safe-shelter as a secure location to best protect victims and their family members from further violence, all while fostering independence, life planning, and access to community resources.
As of August this year, the program has provided direct client services to 118 victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as 278 shelter bed nights. They've also provided direct contacts to 821 crime victims for follow-up services. Open Heart Advocates will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to make necessary updates to the shelter facility, enhance shelter services, and expand their outreach program.
Haseya Advocate Program
Haseya provides free and confidential Native-specific advocacy to survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking in El Paso County. One of the most essential services they provide is assisting their participants in finding safe housing. Many survivors enter Haseya's program homeless, secondary to fleeing a domestic violence situation. Haseya works with local partners to find placement and conduct credit-rebuilding workshops.
Haseya will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to assist program participants with rent and/or security deposits. Financial abuse is a common power and control tactic of perpetrators to keep their victim trapped in an abusive relationship. This is a barrier that Haseya often sees that jeopardizes the security of survivors and their families as the relocate to safe spaces.
Housing Resources of Western Colorado
Housing Resources of Western Colorado helps Coloradans access affordable housing through its Mutual Self-Help program and through offering affordable rental housing. They will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to support their $aver Success! Program, which provides matched savings and financial coaching. The course requires participants to complete four sessions with a HUD-approved housing counselor and, by the end of the course, HRWC will match savings up to $500 per household. The program incorporates a focus on developing long-term positive financial habits. $aver Success! includes collaboration with regional partners, including Mesa and Montrose Office of Human Services, local libraries, and Hilltop Family Resource Center. The program is available to anyone in HRWC's 14-county service area.
Interfaith Alliance launched their Congregation Land Campaign (CLC) in 2017 to significantly increase affordable housing development on some of the thousands of acres of congregation-owned real estate throughout Colorado. Over the last two years, the team has piloted this initiative with several churches and is ready to scale their efforts to suburban and rural areas across the state. Furthermore, CLC provides critical predevelopment services to anchor institutions that would otherwise be unable to undertake a real estate development process. CLC focuses on relationship-building, education, and technical assistance that results in viable housing project concepts and an RFP process to identify an experienced development partner. The $10,000 Direct Effect Award will be used to expand capacity as CLC extends is efforts to northern Colorado (Greeley/Fort Collins), Aurora, Golden, and rural communities in Southwest Colorado.
Kavod Senior Life
Kavod Senior Life is a nonsectarian senior living community in Denver, providing low-income adults (62+) with high-quality housing and support services that promote independence and self-sufficiency while also meeting important physical, mental, educational, social, and spiritual needs. Kavod's "aging-in-place" model empowers residents to care for themselves while providing a variety of safety net services that reduce barriers to health services and reduce the need for nursing home care.
Kavod Senior Life will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to sustain its aging-in-place model for its on-campus residents while concurrently providing off-site outreach through its subsidiary program, Kavod in the City (KITC), which serves low-income adults living in other subsidized housing communities.
Prairie Family Center
The Prairie Family Center (PFC) was established in 1997 to coordinate with other family agencies and expand community-based services for the underserved and at-risk populations in Kit Carson County. As a resource center, PFC provides programs in early education, financial literacy, youth development, and programs that strengthen the elderly. Their efforts have assisted Coloradans in becoming financially secure, which leads them to affordable housing. In short, PFC helps vulnerable families become self-sustaining. Prairie Family Center will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to help seven families with rental assistance and weekly case management—the necessary funds to successfully and realistically assist the underserved populations of Kit Carson County and the surrounding area with direct access to affordable housing.
Rising Starts of Pagosa Springs – Pagosa Play Place
Rising Starts of Pagosa Springs is a 501(c)3 nonprofit doing business as Pagosa Play Place. The Pagosa Play Place is the response of Rising Starts of Pagosa Springs to the lack of a stimulating, safe, clean, and climate-controlled play area/activity center for children age 0-10 in the community. In operation since March 2018, their facility provides engaging indoor play equipment; infant toys for motor development; and music, art, story time, and science discovery classes supported by the community, sponsors, and their membership families. The Pagosa Play Place also serves as a critical space for parents to meet, connect, and share their experiences. The incorporated workspace supports stay-at-home parents, remote workers, and online learners.
Rising Starts recently began a collaboration with Rise Above Violence of Archuleta County, a nonprofit helping victims of domestic violence, through a multifamily membership sponsored by Sohum Global Foundation. The Play Place is also partnered with two other nonprofits in Pagosa Springs—Friends of the San Juan River (whose mission closely aligns with the importance of safe play), and Thingamajig Theater (who shares opportunities for supporting the arts).
Rising Starts will use their Direct Effect Award in the following ways: Fifty percent will be allocated towards expanding facility use, allowing parents more freedom and giving the Pagosa Play Place more opportunities for community development and nonprofit collaborations; thirty percent will go towards work space improvements and tech accessibility; and twenty percent will fill material needs and the cost of occasional professionals for a season of creative learning through project-based discovery, storytelling and literacy opportunities, exploring art, and cherished instrument exposure and musical movement.
Sunshine Home Share Colorado
Established to meet the growing need for in-home affordable senior support services and the increasing need for affordable housing, Sunshine is the first nonprofit home sharing program in the state. Sunshine Home Share Colorado assists seniors age in place by increasing their network of support. Sunshine is filling many gaps and helping address the issues of isolation, home up-keep, transportation, caregiving needs, economic struggles, as well as the housing shortage. Sunshine states that the economic advantages gained from home sharing and the social connection generated is often the difference between existing and thriving.
Sunshine serves five Denver metro communities and will be implementing a program in 2020 in Colorado Springs in collaboration with the Pikes Peak Area Agency on Aging. Sunshine will use their $10,000 Direct Effect Award to support a variety of needs, including supporting lower-income seniors to prepare for home sharing by completing minor but necessary home repairs, cleaning, social-services trainings; and expanding Sunshine's Financial Social Work model to support their clients in achieving better financial well-being.
The Action Center
The Action Center is the largest and most comprehensive nonprofit human services agency serving Jefferson County. Since 1968, The Action Center has been a critical source of assistance, connection, and hope for Jefferson County's most vulnerable population. They help individuals and families to end or avert homelessness, and make ends meet with food, clothing, rent, and utility assistance.
The Action Center's $25,000 Direct Effect Award will support their new homeless shelter program, which is a collaboration between The Action Center, Red Rocks Community College, SCL Health, and STRIDE Community Health Center. The new shelter was created as a locally driven solution to student homelessness. It will launch in early 2020 as a pilot program to serve currently enrolled Red Rocks students experiencing homelessness. Red Rocks Community College estimates that 11% of their on-campus student population is homeless or housing insecure. Moreover, many of these students have major risk factors that further impede their chances of completing their education. They are first-generation college students, and/or are low-income, and/or have a documented disability, and some are emancipated from the foster care system. The program will identify students at the front-end of homelessness to help them become stabilized in permanent housing and provides ongoing services. The Award will support shelter case management, housing navigation/landlord outreach, and post-shelter housing stability/tenancy support—all of which are key components to helping students move out of the cycle of homelessness before it becomes a chronic condition in their lives.
Community Resources and Housing Development Corporation (CRHDC)
CRHDC was founded in 1971 to address the intolerable living conditions and lack of adequate housing for migrant farmworkers in the San Luis Valley and rural Colorado. Their mission has expanded over the years to address both urban and rural community housing needs statewide. Today, CRHDC has worked in 30 counties of Colorado and overseen the construction of 1700 self-help homes for low- to moderate- income households. They've built over 500 units of farm-worker housing and over 300 units of affordable rental housing across the state.
CRHDC will use their $25,000 Direct Effect Award to build self-help homes in the San Luis Valley. The Self-Help program helps very low and low-income families access homeownership. It helps meet the basic need for healthy housing, while also fostering wealth creation. Self-Help program participants use their own hands and time to help build a new home. CRHDC offers participants an opportunity to earn Sweat Equity, which eliminates the need for down payment. In addition, the Award will help CRHDC recover from a recent theft in which their tool trailer was stolen, resulting in a loss valued at over $8,500.
Doors 2 Success
Doors 2 Success provides services and resources for Mesa County residents receiving housing assistance through Grand Junction Housing Authority. Their goal is to prevent homelessness while furthering self-sufficiency. In the past year, Doors 2 Success has helped support 1,116 individuals (200 families and 500 children) secure in their housing.
Doors 2 Success operates a Security Deposit Guarantee Fund. This program, created as a pilot, provides landlords with security deposit guarantees, while allowing renters to pay for their security deposit over time. Through this program, Doors 2 Success works with willing landlords to establish guarantee of payment for any property damage by the tenant in lieu of an up-front security deposit. Tenants pay the landlord through a payment plan and the guaranty fund only pays money out to the landlord if the tenants' payments fall through. Currently, 90 percent of the households supported by the guaranty program successfully complete their repayment plan, resulting in no need to use the guaranty. Doors 2 Success will use their $25,000 Direct Effect Award to double the number of individuals and families served by the Guaranty Fund program.
Family and Intercultural Resource Center (FIRC)
FIRC strengthens families, the community, and the state by increasing access to affordable housing. As part of their programming, FIRC provides the Housing Works Initiative. FIRC partners with homeowners to transition short-term rentals into workforce housing and negotiates for affordability. Using existing stock creates an immediate solution, while eliminating new construction costs. Their partner, Omni Property Management, provides a greatly discounted service fee and cost savings that pass from homeowner to tenant. Rent scholarships are available through partnerships with the faith community. Families benefitting from the rent scholarships engage in ongoing development, including goal setting, financial literacy, and connection to resources to promote self-sufficiency. The initiative currently houses 50 working adults and 10 children. FIRC will use their $25,000 Direct Effect Award to identify an estimated 15 additional housing units.
In 2019, Summit County homeowners hosted the second greatest number of Airbnb guests in the state. Over 1,000 jobs go unfilled and with an unemployment rate of approximately 2 percent, the local economy suffers as potential employees struggle to secure housing.
2020 David W. Herlinger Golf Tournament Beneficiary
Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center
Founded in 2016, Mt. Carmel has provided comprehensive support and resources for more than 6,000 veterans, active-duty military, and their families, for a total of 33,000 client visits. Mt. Carmel makes Colorado stronger by delivering solutions for veteran families so that they can address their core emotional and physical needs, apply the skills and lessons learned in their service to civilian life, and ultimately thrive.
Mt. Carmel's 16,000 square-foot building and growing campus, dedicated solely to direct programming, is accessed seamlessly by veterans, and has quickly become an incubator and network hub for Veterans Services in Colorado Springs, with over 45 partners co-located onsite. These private, nonprofit, and governmental agencies are dedicated to meeting the health and human service needs of the Pike's Peak Region's vast military and veteran community.
Mt. Carmel will use the estimated $75,000 David W. Herlinger Golf Tournament proceeds to prevent veteran families from becoming homeless, providing temporary rent assistance while the families stabilize their situation and secure stable employment. In addition, funds will be used to support Mt. Carmel's Prep Connect 360 program, a five-day intensive transition workshop for active-duty military, veterans, and their family members that provides an in-depth focus on career assessment, career goal development, interview skills, and networking.
From supporting the provision of individual therapy, job coaching, internships, and PTSD support groups, to providing basic necessities, legal support, and emergency funds for housing deposits, rent, and utilities, funding from CHFA's 2020 David W. Herlinger Golf Tournament will help to ensure Mt. Carmel's continued ability to provide specialized services and resources for veterans and their families.