We brought solar to the St. Francis Center (SFC) in Denver helping people experiencing homelessness and/or who are justice-involved have a safe/warm place to sleep at the new 48-housing unit Warren Residences. Plus, increased access to work in the renewable energy sector through our new workforce development program in partnership with the installer, ARE Solar.
The planned 26.24kW solar array will help safeguard these services and improve the visibility of renewable energy in the nonprofit sector. “One of our values is to improve the environment,” said Tom Luehrs, SFC Executive Director, “solar panels are key to using resources in the best way as a community.”
In 2020, the total daily visits by guests to St. Francis Center were 192,457 with a daily average of 526 different individuals. In total, 10,483 different guests were welcomed by the Day Center Team over the course of the year.
The primary causes of homelessness remain high rent, lack of jobs, and mental health issues. The COVID-19 pandemic, and its negative impacts, are leading to an increase in need and homelessness. In partnership with ARE Solar (the solar installer), we are also developing a renewable energy workforce program, creating a direct pathway to jobs in this sector.
Note: St. Francis Center does not make any of its services contingent in any way whatsoever to participation in religious services or adherence to religious doctrine.
“St. Francis has helped me in a couple of ways,” said David Jones, SFC user, “…the first way they have been of help to me is by providing storage space for my clothing and other belongings. Before that, I had to carry all my things around with me and it really started to wear my body out … they also allow me to receive mail and helped me get a valid CO ID… Overall St. Francis is a good place to go for people like me seeking help. They provide many services and if it was not for them, … I probably would be worse off.”