2021 Member Service Highlights
Alongside our Community Shares Coffee-Break series: Where Are We Now? we are highlighting our member nonprofits' work through our #memberservicehighlights marketing campaign via weekly Friday emails, social media posts, and on our website!

Today's Member Service Highlight features College Track, The Delores Project, and Playworks Colorado Keep reading where they are a year into the pandemic and how you can support!
Learn more and get connected with more of our member nonprofits through our Community Shares Coffee-Breaks.

Join us for our second session in our Coffee-Break Series: Where Are We Now? highlighting American Friends Service Committee and Inside Out Youth Services in the cause area, Working for a Just Society focusing on Advocacy in COVID Times.
College Track
College Track equips students confronting systemic barriers to earn a bachelor’s degree in pursuit of a life of opportunity, choice, and power.
How have your programs have grown, changed, or evolved to become a key community service during this time?
College Track is a college completion program serving first-generation students, helping them successfully get to and through college with little debt. During this last year, our staff has worked hard and pivoted early to support our scholars with online learning. We have been instrumental in helping our scholars and their families with essentials such as food, healthcare, and extra scholarship funds as our college scholars quickly needed to fly home.

Have any unexpected opportunities arisen for your organization's work in this past year?
Opportunities during this past year include, online meetings, panel discussions, and events with professionals who live out of state. Also, we have been able to engage with our college students and alumni via Zoom more often.

What can the community do to help?
There are so many ways to support! The local nonprofit community can help by partnering with us to better serve our students with programs and community events which may be beneficial for our students. Also, providing us any ideas on virtual events for fundraising would be appreciated. Additionally, the community can help us by getting the word out about our program and success rate to corporations, foundations, and community members who would like to donate. All in all, we are always looking for professionals to talk with our scholars about their career paths, corporations to host our college students for a day, and volunteer tutors. 
The Delores Project
Providing shelter to women and transgender individuals experiencing homelessness in a trauma-informed, strengths-based, housing first community.
How have your programs have grown, changed, or evolved to become a key community service during this time?
We’ve quickly evolved within the last year to support the growing needs of women and trans folks experiencing homelessness. Specifically, our shelter transitioned from a night shelter to operating 24/7; therefore, doubling our meal service to shelter guests. To remain open and operate during this pandemic, we had to reduce shelter capacity by almost half, from serving 60 guests to about 35 guests under social distancing guidelines. 

Have any unexpected opportunities arisen for your organization's work in this past year?
Recently, we established a Rehousing Program. The pandemic sped up this new program's creation and implementation. The program’s focus is to offer case management services and resources to all shelter guests and collaborate with them on finding a long-term housing solution. To date, almost 30 shelter guests have found housing because of this team.

What can the community do to help?
A year into the pandemic, our team is exhausted – physically and emotionally. The rapid change to staffing and operating the shelter 24/7 put immense strain on our staff, and our guests feel the strain too. Limiting outings to prevent community spread has increased the sense of isolation from social networks that often help people experiencing homelessness. There are a couple things you can do to help both our staff and our guests:
1) Volunteer with us! We’re always looking for meal servers and meal providers to buy or make lunch or dinner for our shelter guests.
2) Give in-kind by shopping our Amazon Wish List to keep our pantry stocked and make sure our guests have essential toiletries.
3) Donate and give someone shelter—a safe, dignified space to breathe and regroup—and the resources needed to move on to a more stable future. 
4) Support Self Care. Whether it’s donating cupcakes or lotion, small treats have a huge impact on all of us.
Playworks Colorado
We are a social impact organization that helps kids stay active and build valuable social and emotional skills through play.
How have your programs have grown, changed, or evolved to become a key community service during this time?
In a year of uncertainty, Playworks has helped schools provide stability for children through safe, healthy, and inclusive play virtually and in-person. Play at Home was introduced to ensure families continued to play with live Recess' and recorded games at home. Playworks Coaches launched these virtual programs at the start of the school year with live and recorded Recess’ and Class Games Times videos and virtual teacher trainings. Whether in-person or remote, our Coaches continue to leverage play to help kids build safe, stable, and nurturing relationships that can help buffer against toxic stress and build resilience.

Have any unexpected opportunities arisen for your organization's work in this past year?
We were able to offer a new virtual service called Keep Playing to current and new school partners. Keep Playing takes the guesswork out of incorporating play into distance learning and includes virtual resources and training, making it simple to access and benefit from Playworks’ expertise.

What can the community do to help?
Never has play been more critical in providing students ways to be physically active, learn social-emotional skills, build positive relationships, and experience joy. Reach out to us to learn more about our mission and how we support elementary schools in Colorado; maybe we are at a school near you! You can also support us by getting your company involved; we have fun virtual engagement opportunities available for corporate groups that helps sponsor our work in school communities.
Designate a gift to these incredible nonprofits and support the amazing work they do to serve our communities even during difficult times.
Community Shares of Colorado
303.861.7507 | www.cshares.org
Community Shares, 789 Sherman Street, Suite 230, Denver, CO 80203