to three buildings and two lots from 1820 to 1824 Larimer Street. A dormitory for transients called “Sunshine House” was also opened at 1640 Market Street at this time. The Sunshine Rescue Mission was then sold to Goodheart in 1927, and following his hospitalization, was closed and sold to pay debts in 1930.
The Denver Rescue Mission Re-Birth
Soon after the closing of the Sunshine Mission, Rev. Gravett and a dedicated group of volunteers founded Denver Rescue Mission, located on 1120 Eighteenth Street. The Mission continued to expand following the purchase of a one-story building on 1818 Larimer Street in 1940, as well as the construction of a new building 19 years later. The following year, the Mission opened its first medical and dental clinics. In 1970, the Denver Rescue Mission sold its Larimer Street facility in order to purchase our current facility, the Lawrence Street Shelter.
Expanding To Provide for Men
In 1988, the Mission acquired the former Mercy Farm in Wellington. Colorado. Renamed Harvest Farm, the 209-acre farm grows food crops for the needy, provides long-term rehabilitation for 72 men in the New Life Program and serves as a rural outreach.
Expanding to Provide for Single Mothers and Their Children
The Mission also expanded to include Champa House after the Foothill Capital Corporation of Dallas donated the building in 1988. After intense renovation, this facility, located at 2544 Champa Street, now offers transitional housing and participation in the New Life Program to nine single mothers and their children.
Expanding to Provide Administrative and Program Support, Food, Clothing, and Furniture
The Mission’s administrative home and Ministry Outreach Center was donated in 1991 by Cowles Media. This 37,000 square foot building also served as the central warehouse for food, clothing and furniture for the needy. On January 1st, 2001, Brad Meuli became President and Chief Executive Officer (C.E.O.) of the Mission. His servant heart guides his remarkable leadership of the Mission as it grows and expands.
Expanding to Provide More Transitional Programs
In 2005, the Mission purchased a former hotel on Smith Road and named it “The Crossing.” This outreach currently provides a transitional program for approximately 500 participants in our New Life, Post-Graduate, STAR and Respite programs.
Expanding to Provide More Overnight Shelter
In 2005, renovations to the Mission’s Lawrence Street Shelter were also completed. Overnight shelter capacity was increased to 200 beds and 100 additional cots during inclement weather.
Family Services Programs
In November 2005, the Mission developed a Family Services Program to incorporate the three programs now run through this outreach: Family Rescue Ministry (FRM), STAR Transitional Program and Family Refugee Services (FRS).
Expanding to Provide Life-skills Education and Career Centers
In 2007, the Mission renamed its inaugural computer-based Literacy and Education Center (LEC) to its current Lifeskills, Education and Career Centers. This program assists residents at The Crossing, Champa House and Harvest Farm with academic, career and practical life skills.
Expanding to Fort Collins and moving Ministry Outreach Center
In November 2012, the Mission acquired Open Door Mission in Fort Collins, just nine miles from Harvest Farm. The name changed to Fort Collins Rescue Mission (FCRM) and is considered another site of Denver Rescue Mission. FCRM now provides bed for up to 75 homeless men and women. Steps to Success is a short-term program offered to help people become productive, self-sufficient citizens. At the same time, the Mission was looking to purchase property for a new location for the Ministry Outreach Center and the Administrative Offices. A warehouse on Holly Street was purchased in December 2012, which provided 15,000 more square feet than the previous warehouse. The Mission purchased Pilgrim's Rest Church as well in October 2012 to serve as a new site for the Administrative Offices. The property is located directly across the street from The Crossing and provides a campus-style environment for the Mission.