Category Archives: Charitable Giving

Urban Peak’s Very Cool Urban Nights

For more than 25 years, Urban Peak has provided valuable support services for homeless individuals between the ages of 15 and 24 in the Denver area. Among these services, the organization offers a 40-bed overnight shelter, designed specifically for youth between the ages of 15 and 20. Open all day and night, 365 days per year, the shelter works hard to create a safe and welcoming environment.

During their time at Urban Peak Shelter, young people work closely with case managers to take steps toward obtaining stable housing. In addition to helping youth access their own apartments, Urban Peak organizes family mediation services to help them return home. Other services available at the shelter include a medical clinic with free HIV and pregnancy testing; activities such as art, sports, and outdoor excursions; and three meals each day, along with snacks.

Urban Peak’s fundraising event Urban Nights will be on August 22, 2015. Modeled after an event at Omaha Fashion Week, is a fun event to support an organization that helps support youth who are experiencing the brutal reality of homelessness. This multi-sensory fundraiser features an exciting fashion show under the viaduct at Mile High Station featuring Denver’s hottest up-and-coming designers, a silent auction, and pre- and after-event celebrations.

All net proceeds generated from the evening benefit the youth of Urban Peak.

For more information on Urban Nights, check out

Jessie’s Homes for Families

Over the years, Jessie’s Homes for Families has become known as a dedicated supporter of the homeless community in the Denver area. Led by philanthropist and entrepreneur Jessie Schaden – who happens to be my daughter – the organization is currently working with the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless to build affordable housing in Denver.


With your help in donating to Jessie’s Homes for Families, this beautiful building will take homeless families off the street.

With your help in donating to Jessie’s Homes for Families, this beautiful building will take homeless families off the street.

The new housing units will be located at Renaissance at North Colorado Station, and residents will have easy access via train or shuttle to the Stout Street Health Center, which provides medical and dental care, substance abuse treatment, and mental health services. To accomplish its mission of giving children and families a stable environment in which to live and thrive, Jessie’s Homes for Families encourages members of the community to make donations of any size to the project. Once the organization reaches its goal of $150,000, it will have the equity necessary to begin construction on nearly 130 transitional housing units for families experiencing homelessness.

You can learn more at

America’s Road Home Helps Homeless Families

When we drive around urban areas, it’s not unusual to see homeless individuals. Sometimes I see them so often, it becomes second nature to tune them out. Today I’m not going to do that. Instead, I wanted to spend a few minutes reflecting on a specific homeless demographic that may surprise you, and offer just a little bit of good news about homelessness in our area.

Statistics tell us that the majority of today’s homeless individuals are people in family groups with young children. Affected by the serious economic downturn, they are people who have lost the ability to pay rent regularly and must often live in their vehicles or on the streets. Some sources estimate that more than 1.5 million children will experience homelessness in any given year in the United States.

America’s Road Home (ARH) is a Denver-based nonprofit organization that works to end homelessness among our nation’s families, striving to fund programs connecting homeless families with the resources they need to become self-sufficient.

America’s Road Home works with government and nonprofit agencies to call attention to successful programs striving to end homelessness or alleviate its effects. Through a model of “causal capitalism,” ARH assists in fostering connections between donor funds and hundreds Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 2.42.15 PMof organizations around the country that deliver direct services to families.

ARH has lent its support to groups like Urban Peak, which focuses on offering vital services to homeless and at-risk youth in Denver, as well as Nexus C.A.R.E.S. in Dallas, which serves young women and girls trying to break habits of substance abuse.

America’s Road Home supports a number of projects in our own communities, including the Aromor Apartments in Denver’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. Officially opened in May 2009, Aromor Apartments provides supportive housing for adults and families experiencing homelessness. The development began with a donation of $1.5 million from America’s Road Home.

Encompassing 66 housing units, Aromor Apartments is designed to support recently homeless individuals and address the special needs of its residents. Residents have a minimum monthly rent of $25, and they spend no more than 30 percent of their monthly income on rent. Aromor Apartments also offers residents a broad range of services and amenities, from community rooms to a lending library and computer lab. Residents can also benefit from case management services, as well as counseling for mental health and substance abuse issues.

I’m grateful for the many positive things in my life and, too, I’m grateful for the opportunity to support organizations that help those who need more positive things in their lives.

The Generosity of Smashburger Guests

Growing up in a large, tightknit family, there were many values my parents taught us kids. One of those was the importance of giving back, either through volunteering our time to a cause we believe in, or charitable giving. Today I’m lucky enough to be in a position to continue those lessons by trying to set good examples for my own children. Continue reading