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Mission
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

WOMEN'S HOMELESS INITIATIVE CLUB PARTICIPATES IN COGENERATE FORUM

On October 20, Capitol Hill United Ministries and Women's Homeless Initiative (CHUM WHI) invited members of the RJ Women's Homeless Initiative (WHI) Club to participate in their most recent event, CoGenerate; an intergenerational discussion on issues of the unhoused. We were thrilled to have six students from the WHI Club participate in this forum of compassion, education, hope and response.
Since 2012, Regis Jesuit students have worked in the community with CHUM WHI to directly serve those who are unhoused directly. Those who volunteer with CHUM, including our own WHI Club, have served more than 90,000 women experiencing homelessness over the last nine years, offering safe overnight sanctuary, supportive services, healthy meals and an ear to listen – every night of the year (excluding the time during COVID-19). For the last several years since the pandemic, CHUM has been making and delivering approximately 500 lunches each week to eight different Denver agencies, amounting to close to 80,000 lunches provided to those in need!

Participating in the CoGenerate forum was another opportunity for RJ students to get involved in the community's efforts to support the unhoused. Attendees listened to various presentations and engaged in intergenerational conversations surrounding the topic of the unhoused with the goal of finding CREATIVE possibilities for this complicated issue. CoGenerate’s invitees included adults aged 65 and older as well as younger high school students and college-aged adults. More than 130 invitees were in attendance with an even number representing each age group as well as members of the unhoused community. A facilitator was assigned to each discussion table to help guide the conversations and encourage creative solutions. CHUM WHI plans to distribute summaries of the discussions to city and state policy personnel and other stakeholders following the event.

Notable speakers at the event were former Denver City councilwoman Robin Kniech and executive director at the Metro Denver Homeless Initiative Dr. Jamie Rife. Attendees also heard a pre-recorded presentation from Denver’s Mayor Mike Johnston. In addition, an intergenerational facilitated panel of people previously or currently unhoused was present. Students also had the opportunity to view a wonderful exhibit on display from the Aurora History Museum of photos and stories of 18 persons who are/were unhoused. Photographs from the book EXPOSURE: Homelessness through the lens of art and poetry, written and created by a team from the Women's Homeless Initiative, were available for purchase.  

This was a wonderful opportunity for students to engage in advocacy work around the issue of homelessness, a critical topic in our community currently as well as a focus of Denver’s current mayoral administration. What a wonderful opportunity for our students to dive more deeply into how we can make a difference in the status of the unhoused in Denver beyond making sandwiches.

Way to be with and for Others, Raiders!
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