Skip navigation

OFFICE OF HOPE (HOUSING & OPPORTUNITIES for PEOPLE EVERYWHERE)

Through the new Office of HOPE, we are focused on connecting individuals and families to healthy living, good paying jobs and affordable housing.

THE NEED

More than 1 in 3 staying in homeless shelters have a job

 

About 1 in 5 are seniors, mostly women

 

Another 1 in 5 are considered chronically homeless

 

Approximately 81,000 affordable units are needed

 

THE OPPORTUNITY

Helping Denver residents experiencing homelessness or struggling to make ends meet by strategically leveraging public and private partner programs and resources to provide:

  • Jobs through workforce training that will help families and people grow their wages and begin to save for their future;
  • Health services, including mental health, addiction and supportive services, to help people rise to the opportunities ahead of them; and
  • Housing that is affordable across income categories to ensure families and individuals take root in Denver.

 

Job Training

 

Image services

 

Housing

 

THE STRATEGY

Our strategy goes beyond a housing-first approach, and focuses efforts on connecting individuals and families to affordable housing, healthy living and good paying jobs. The new approach integrates all three factors to empower people to lead vibrant lives no matter their station in life. 

Working with our community partners and city agencies, we compiled a list of 30 short-term actions to improve and expand services, which include:

Housing

  • Develop policy and financing for Accessory Dwelling Units in partnership with the Denver Housing Authority
  • Develop code compliance checklist for Live/Work Spaces and look to establish a navigator in Permitting/Zoning to answer resident questions
  • Expand pipeline of permanent supportive housing (PSH) projects by evaluating and developing a Supportive Services Funding Program, which will include a TANF and/or Medicaid underwriting criteria for the pipeline
  • Improve and expand Renter Eviction Assistance Program to prevent more people from losing housing or to help them access new housing opportunities when facing eviction

 

Health and Supportive Services

  • Expand number of Co-Responders from 6 to 24, pair them with a wider array of emergency service providers and develop specialized areas of expertise for youth, those with opioid addiction and other focused areas of need.
  • Develop and administer pilot peer-to-peer mental health, engagement, counseling and support program.
  • Expand storage options and develop sidewalk storage pilot program for individuals seeking shelter services.
  • Develop and pilot shelter diversion program.

Workforce

  • Evaluate, expand and integrate Denver Day Works Program with workforce Initiatives.
  • Expand the Section 3 Jobs Programs, which provide economic opportunities for low- and very low-income individuals, and integrate it with the Denver Housing Authority.

CONTINUING OUR MOMENTUM

Today, the City and County of Denver invests more in affordable housing and homelessness than ever before. The new strategy builds and expands on the considerable work by the city and partners in the areas of housing, job training and health services over the last six years.

Housing

  • Passed the first-ever dedicated fund of $150 million over the next 10 years to create or preserve 6,000 affordable homes.
  • By the end of the year, the city will have completed the goal of building, preserving or rehabilitating 3,000 affordable units over five years, a year ahead of schedule.
  • Passed a local construction defects reform ordinance to spur condo construction and advocated for statewide action.
  • Supported nearly 1,300 households with down payment assistance through the launch of the Metro Mortgage Assistance Plus Program in 2013.
  • Housing nearly 250 individuals experiencing chronic homelessness in permanent supportive housing by the end of 2017.
  • Connected nearly 1,500 people to permanent supportive and more stable, long-term housing since the beginning of 2016, which includes but is not limited to:
    • Nearly 800 housed in the Denver area through the Coordinated Assessment and Housing Placement System.
    • 279 housed through the outreach work of the Denver Street Outreach Collaborative.
  • Began building two additional shelters that are set to open in 2017 through partnerships with community providers.

Health and supportive services

  • Launched the new co-responder program, which pairs mental health professionals with police officers on patrol. Teams have assisted more than 1,300 people and connected 100 percent of them health services, with only 4 percent of contacts resulting in a citation or arrest.
  • Expanded street outreach workers to a 24 hour a day, seven day a week operation to assist homeless individuals at all times of the day.
  • Created Denver Outreach Court, which brings the courtroom to homeless individuals in a safe and familiar location while reducing the amount of time required to resolve warrants and tickets. In just eleven sessions, the court has heard more than 550 cases involving 190 people. 100 percent have successfully completed their cases.

Workforce

  • Launched Denver Day Works, which connects people who are homeless directly to professional work experience. More than 4,200 hours of work and more than $50,000 in wages have been paid to the 109 participants involved in the program. 
  • Increased access to workforce services through additional locations and new dedicated staff; now annually serving nearly 31,000 adults with job searches, more than 2,800 employers with talent recruitment, and more than 800 youth with job training and employment.
  • Significantly expanded its employment and training programs for disadvantaged youth through the launch of new internship programs for at-risk youth and Denver Scholarship Foundation scholars, including entrepreneurship and software coding boot-camp training programs, as well as implementation of the My Brother’s Keeper Summer of Success program for young men of color.
 

MORE INFORMATION


By partnering with multiple agencies and groups, we are working on 30 short-term actions to jumpstart our initiatives.

 

Find out more information about the Lower Income Voucher Equity (LIVE) Denver Pilot Program. 
 

Contact

LANDLORD TENANT GUIDE

The Landlord Tenant Guide provides an easy-to-understand breakdown of the rights of both residential tenants and landlords in the City and County of Denver.