Cassandra Carpenter snuggles with her son Javoghn Tyler, 5, as the two enjoy a close moment at Joshua Station where she has lived for almost 2 years on October 13, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. Joshua Station is a faith-based community helping families make the transition from homelessness to a healthy, stable living environment. Since 2001 Joshua Station has provided long-term transformational housing and support for high-risk families with multiple barriers to self-sufficiency.
Cassandra Carpenter spent years on the street, hounded by a meth addiction she couldn’t escape, making a series of bad choices that almost cost her time in prison and the loss of her children.
That all changed in January 2015, when Carpenter and her daughter found refuge at Joshua Station, a transitional housing program run by Mile High Ministries in the former Spa Motor Inn near West 8th Avenue and Interstate 25. The program is one of about 50 receiving funds from The Denver Post’s Season to Share campaign this year.
Carpenter, now sober, plans to obtain her GED, using that as a stepping stone to study for a career as a radiology assistant. With legal assistance from Joshua Station, she recently won back full custody of her son.
“I couldn’t have done it without the foundation of Joshua Station,” the 29-year-old Aurora native said.
Joshua Station hosts about 31 families who have found themselves homeless for a variety of reasons – drug addiction, domestic violence, mental illness or immigration.
Zariah… lives with her mother and older brother at Joshua Station. Joshua Station is a faith-based community helping families make the transition from homelessness to a healthy, stable living environment. Since 2001 Joshua Station has provided long-term transformational housing and support for high-risk families with multiple barriers to self-sufficiency.
It helps another 40 families or so who have gone through the program, which provides housing for up to two years, said Kelsey Winters, development director at Joshua Station.
Families that are accepted must come up with a “life plan” and follow through on it. They must pay what they can afford in rent, submit to drug testing, undergo weekly room inspections and join a community dinner every Thursday.
The staff of 14, along with outside volunteers, provide counseling, life skills training and a host of other services. One of the most important things the program does is help its participants learn to trust others again and build a new social support network, Winters said.
Joshua Station is starting renovations that will create individual offices for the 14 staff members, allowing for more privacy, and that will create a larger space for community gatherings, which are often full to the brim.
The program, one of the few in the city that keeps homeless families together and supports them for an extended period, faces high demand and a long waiting list, with dozens turned away for every family that is accepted, Winters said.
Name of charity: Joshua Station
Address: 2330 W. Mulberry Place, Denver
Year started: 2001
Number of employees: 14
Annual budget: $940,000
Percentage of funds to client services: 83 percent
Number served last year: 257
Mile High Ministries is an amazing organization and Joshua Station is a huge gift to our local community.
If you would like to give to Mile High Ministries directly you can do so here: GIVE!