Homeless children have nowhere to go

By: Joe Gagnon Email
By: Joe Gagnon Email

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - Homeless children in the Grand Valley are forced to face bitter cold temperatures during the day with nowhere to go.

There's no doubt it's cold outside, but imagine having no place to go to get warm. Hundreds of Grand Junction residents are faced with this daily, having to bear the freezing temperatures without shelter or heat.
There are some places that stay open to keep people out of the cold, but in some cases children are forced to face the elements with nowhere to go.

For the Sapp family, that's a reailty.

Mattew Sapp and his wife have a four-year-old son and each day they need to find somewhere to get out of the freezing cold temperatures.

On Wednesday night, they stayed at they stayed in the homeless shelter Homeward Bound on North Avenue, but when they're shown the door at 8 a.m., they need to search for more shelter.

There is the Day Center to go to at the corner of 3rd Street and Pitkin Avenue which opens in the mid-morning, but they don't allow children anymore and that includes little Mark Sapp.

The Sapps hope someday they'll have they'll have their own shelter from the cold. Fortunately they were taken in by friends for the day and will stay there until Homeward Bound opens their doors for the night.

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  • by Ellie Location: Atlanta GA on Dec 18, 2009 at 01:40 PM
    So what's happening in Grand Junction about this? Has some other place been found for families to be safe during the day? Does someone work with families to help them overcome barriers to getting into housing? Assuming housing is available...often not....
  • by connie Location: gj on Dec 18, 2009 at 08:35 AM
    if this is a matter safety for the children so be it, but that does not excuse the fact that children need a warm and safe place to stay during the winter months. if they can't stay at the day center, then another convenient and safe building should be provided. let's close hooters and use that building! yeah, they could go on a bus, they could go to some store, but that does not meet the needs for children.
  • by Jacob Location: Grand Junction on Dec 17, 2009 at 08:06 PM
    Local grassroots organization, Housing First! No More Deaths!, will be holding a March for No More Deaths on the Streets of Grand Junction on December 20th. The march will gather at 1pm at Whitman Park and march at 1:30pm to Hawthorn Park. At 3pm at Hawthorn Park the Grand Valley Coalition for the Homeless will be having their annual memorial for those who have died in our community without homes. “We need to be both sad and angry,” said HF! NMD! organizer Mallory Rice. “That’s why were marching.” What: March for no more deaths on the Streets of Grand Junction Where: Whitman Park (5th & Pitkin) to Hawthorn Park (5th & Gunnison) When: Gather at 1pm. March at 1:30pm. Memorial at 3pm (Memorial sponsored by GVCH not HF! NMD!) Who: Housing First! No More Deaths!
  • by hurt mom Location: Grand Junction on Dec 13, 2009 at 07:00 PM
    My heart is so broken, over this SELF CENTERED attitude!!!! So, the Day Center is not a baby sitter! Ok, what's the point???? How would you feel if your children were out in -2 weather? Discipline the parent not these children! And don't take one parents actions and use the same measure on everyone. If the Day Center used to allow children then decide not to would that not be an act or instance of discriminating? Grand Junction we need to change this! We all need to be doing something so these children are not on the street! I ask each person reading, "what are you doing to stop children from being on the street?" Can you open your home? Can you buy them a hotel for the night? Are you talking about this story and doing nothing to help? Let your heart be broken and be moved to do something. The greatest thing one can do for another is lay down your life for another! Lay down $100.00 and provide a night of peace, lay down your heart and move to help change Grand Junction!!!!!!
  • by Jill Location: Grand Junction on Dec 12, 2009 at 03:51 PM
    Speaking as someone who had to be homeless here in Grand Junction with a child, because no one would rent to us because we hadn't been here long enough. There are many places to go hang out during the day. Wal-Mart, City Market, the Libary, the Mall and ride the buses. The day center is some pace that you don't want your child to see or be around. Better yet take responsibilty and get yourself off of the streets. Expecialy if you have a child.
  • by andy Location: grand junction on Dec 11, 2009 at 02:16 PM
    The day center sounds like they are not doing their job correctly. Everyone should be accepted there if they need a place to go. Those were the most hurtful words I have ever heard at Christmas time when the day center lady said "we are not here to babysit". I think she should be out in the cold for a week and see how it feels. Since I have seen this news clip I want to tell everyone that Grand Junction doesn’t need crap like Hooters, they need a better homeless facility.
  • by Diane Location: Nilan on Dec 11, 2009 at 07:39 AM
    This is a perfect example of insanity. People responsible for this policy--including city officials--should, with or without children, for just one blustery day, try to "hang out" with no place to go. When is our nation going to get a compassionate clue? What chance of a successful life do you think a toddler has after being shuffled about like a sack of feed? Outraged people reading this can do something. Here's my suggestion: http://uspoverty.change.org/blog/view/do_mayors_know_about_poverty_ho-ho
  • by Katie Location: Grand Junction on Dec 11, 2009 at 03:09 AM
    I can’t comprehend how The Day Center for the homeless won’t accept children. How does a human being just turn away a child in the middle of winter? If parents aren’t watching their children then punish them, not everyone else. This sounds inhumane especially during the holiday season. I am very disappointed and The Day Center should be ashamed!
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