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BOULDER, Colo. –

Boulder County groups that serve the homeless and hungry are seeing double-digit increases in the number of clients this year, according to a report released Thursday by a University of Colorado student group.

CoPirg’s campaign “Students Against Hunger and Homelessness,” as a result, urges students to donate to food banks, volunteer at local shelters and consider jobs in the nonprofit field. Forty-thousand people are living in poverty in Boulder and Broomfield counties, which is enough people to fill up Folsom Field, according to the report.

Community Food Share distributed 5.3 million meals in 2008, compared to 4.5 million meals the year before. The food bank is distributing 20 percent more food than this time last year. Similarly, Meals on Wheels in Boulder, which delivers food to elderly and disabled, has seen a 16 percent increase in clients.

The Salvation Army’s Boulder branch helps 15 to 20 clients a month with rent and utility payments and is providing about 250 clothing vouchers this year, about double last year’s numbers.

And the Boulder Carriage House — which serves lunches and dinners to Boulder’s homeless and working poor — said requests for food and shelter have increased since last year. The group is serving 130 people daily for lunch and 100 for dinner. At its overflow “Emergency Warming Center,” there is an average of 25 clients, compared to a dozen last year.

Jim Budd, a former client, is launching another nonprofit to provide more shelter beds to meet the demand in Boulder.

Leanne Eckelberg, author of the report, said the intent of the campaign is to highlight the needs of those in Boulder as the economic downturn translates to more people needing food and shelter. She said students are in a good position to volunteer because there are campus internship programs and professors who are experts on social problems.

Archived comments

The more services and charityies you add to Boulder County, the more people will flock here for hand-outs.

You can’t win, demand will always increase, and our city already has a psychotic transient beggar for each corner.

How many girls need to get raped by bums before Boulder responds like Madison Wisconsin?

GabeMc

3/19/2009 7:03:28 PM

This is just the beginning; soon tent cities will be popping up.

Get ready for the big Depression..

sidd

3/19/2009 8:27:11 PM

The days of the open hand. We’re about 1/3 to 1/2 way through the downturn.

Get rid of the illegals and their kids in the boulder housing and you’d have a lot more room. Send them to mexico and let their country pick up the tab.

Flyonthewall

3/20/2009 2:00:14 AM

Really, a tent city for Boulder’s homeless people as a stopgap measure is not a bad idea — North Boulder Park seems like an ideal location.

Of course, proper sanitary facilities would have to be provided; one sees portable toilets at every construction site, so a few more shouldn’t be a big concern.

The advantage from a policing standpoint is having so many of the homeless together, making it easier to keep an eye on the minority who are miscreants.

It bemuses Brinkley that this topic always elicits comments from the xenophobes — I challenge them to show me a single homeless man, woman, or child here and now who is an illegal alien! (Likely to be a few illegal aliens from European countries in the Boulder peloton, however).

The undocumented workers are working, and not part of Boulder’s homeless community in the experience of this homeless commentator, and this is also the case in other cities where Brinkley has lived and worked in recent years.

Doc_Brinkley

3/20/2009 10:20:17 AM

I’d like to see a town park where we allow camping.

super_boulder

3/20/2009 3:15:15 PM

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