Park Hill United Methodist Church will host Denver’s next sanctioned camp site for people experiencing homelessness

The site will replace a safe outdoor space in Cap Hill.
2 min. read
Park Hill United Methodist Church and Temple Micah Synagogue. Aug. 23, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Colorado Village Collaborative has chosen Park Hill United Methodist Church as its next location for a sanctioned camp site for people experiencing homelessness, replacing a current site in Capitol Hill that’s scheduled to close next month.

Cole Chandler, executive director of the collaborative, said the church’s pastor, Rev. Nathan Adams, informed parishioners about the new site during Sunday’s services.

The new site is scheduled open June 1 on the church’s parking lot, along Glencoe Street, and be in place until Dec. 31. It will replace the site at the Denver Community Church, at 1595 Pearl St. in Cap Hill, which is scheduled to close at the end of May when its current lease ends. The new site will have 45 tents and house a maximum of 50 people.

Chandler said the collaborative has been casting a wide net as it seeks to find new sanctioned camp site partners. The organization has hosted tours promoting the the sites, also known as safe outdoor spaces. A member of Park Hill Methodist Church participated in a tour, which led to a conversation with church leadership that ended with the church agreeing to host the site.

Chandler said the church wanted “to find a meaningful way,” to address the housing crisis in the city.

Adams said church members have so far been supportive of the idea. He said the church has a social justice group that tries to figure out the best way to serve people in the neighborhood. The group quickly identified housing as a major issue in the city, brainstorming how they and the church could be supportive.

“This is an act of faith for us,” Adams said.

Chandler said the collaborative has been in contact with the local neighborhood organizations including Greater Park Hill Community Inc. and will host two community meetings in May to provide more details about the site. The collaborative is also inviting people to tour the existing site on Pearl Street to see how they operate.

Denver City Council allocated money for the new site in February.

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