DICP Annual Report
"Meeting our participants where they are."
We have interviews with clients and staff throughout this report. Look for the link and click on it to hear about the work we are doing to meet our participants where they are.
Click this button to hear from Larry Martinez, Executive Director
We Are the Community We Serve
Denver Inner City Parish (DICP) is participant driven and has worked in the community since 1960. DICP believes that inclusion is our strength and incorporates the perspectives of our participants to inform our programs. We are a community of diverse ages, gender identities, races, sexual orientations, physical and mental abilities, ethnicities, and perspectives. We are a community committed to environmental sustainability and justice.
Many of our staff and board members are previous participants because it is vital for DICP’s work to reflect the experiences of those we serve. DICP believes diversity is essential to world-building and serving our community. DICP offers programming to individuals and families who are marginalized. There is power in the margin. Together, we build community through social justice, anti-racism, and cultural responsiveness.
We help all. We welcome all.
This year we are proud that we could help unburden our individuals and families as they work to get back on their feet in the economic aftermath of the pandemic. The journey to stability was already going to be rocky for many of our participants, and then rising costs hit us all in the gut. Witnessing the relief wash over someone as we told them, “Yes, we can help with that” is why we do what we do. It is inspirational to see the ways the members of our community are empowering themselves to take their lives into their own hands, whether by giving someone a fresh start with their utilities, helping alleviate the pressure of finding increasingly rare formula, or watching them receive their SNAP benefits in their mail they receive here at our building.
Front Entry Services at a Glance
We distributed 64,257 diapers to 260 families
98 individuals and families received help with hygiene kits
Over $43,400 provided to 112 households to keep their electricity on through a partnership with Energy Outreach Colorado
Click the Play button to hear from Jamie Farnham.
2021-2022 Community Events Services at a Glance
• 178 Backpacks for 178 Children
• 206 Gift Cards Distributed to contribute to
• 48 Thanksgiving Meal Baskets given to
serve 272 individuals
• 618 Individuals Served
• 95 Families Served • 372 Kids Served
• 1128 Toys Given
• 70 families representing 330 individuals served
Christmas Gift Cards
• 30 Gift Cards for 30 Families/135 Family Members
• 15 families with a total of 38 Children received
The Immigrant Center celebrates its one year anniversary of providing much-needed services to members of our community. Services provided include: $50,000 in rental assistance for non-U.S. citizens; help obtaining SB251 driver’s licenses and Colorado IDs; help with completing important USCIS forms, including work authorization and asylum applications; assistance in understanding and navigating the U.S immigration system; and connection with community resources that serve non-citizens.
Since opening last year, the Immigrant Center has served a wide array of neighbors who have come to Denver from across the globe.
2021-2022 Immigrant Center at a Glance
$50,000 housing assistance to 41 families
250 hours of support for people seeking drivers licenses or IDs
440 hrs of Care Navigation
More than 600 hours of legal support provided
LA ACADEMIA CODING INSTITUTE
The La Academia Coding Institute was built around the fact that many high school students lack access to quality computer science education in their schools, even though computing occupations have been the number one source of all new wages in the country for nearly a decade now. Additionally, students of color and female students are particularly underrepresented in all fields of computer science. The La Academia Coding Institute closes this gap by providing instruction in schools and after-school programs to students who do not have the opportunity to study computer science.
Click the Play button to hear Lizbeth Martinez.
2021-2022 La Academia Coding program at a Glance
Served 92 students across multiple cohorts
Provided over 2,750 hours of computer science instruction
79% Students of color
68% Identify as female
83% Report the La Academia Coding Institute provided their first computer science training
STEVE JOHNSEN SCHOLARSHIP
Thousands of students attended La Academia during its 47-year history. Graduates have continued their education in certificate programs, trade schools, community colleges, and universities. To continue supporting those students and their families, DICP offers the Steve Johnsen Scholarship twice yearly to provide financial support to recipients pursuing post-secondary education.
2021-2022 Steve Johnsen Scholarship program at a Glance
9 Scholarship Recipients
Provided over $20,000 worth of scholarships
Volunteer Selection Committee representing community, DICP Board, and La Academia Alumni
2 Previous recipients received college degrees: Lizbeth Martinez and Valentina Nunez
Participant driven to support our community and how we will continue to morph this as we go
DICP has operated a food pantry since it began serving West Denver in 1960. The pantry has evolved greatly over the years from the small closet it once operated out of and this year was no exception. The number one challenge identified by pantry participants in accessing the food in the pantry has been transportation. This January, DICP received a generous donation, from a food pantry volunteer, to underwrite the purchase of a step van and enable DICP to launch our new mobile food pantry. The mobile pantry will allow us to meet participants where they’re at (i.e schools, out-of-school time programs, where they live, or other community
centers) and allow us to reduce food miles and lower carbon emissions.
Food donations have been down across the country since the onset of the pandemic, last year the amount of donated food to DICP was down by 50% from 681,134 lbs
in 20/21 to 333,677 in 21/22.
With a decrease in donations the pantry still managed to serve 11,950 individuals.
Click the Play button to hear Maria Mendoza.
2021-22 Food Pantry at a Glance
11,950 individuals served
278,064 meals served
Over 333,600 lbs of food distributed
DICP’s health education, VeggieRx, kicked off the year conducting youth and parent groups with many schools and afterschool groups across the Denver Metro area. Our partners took notice of the growing health disparities of the families and children they serve and were clamoring for a program like VeggieRx and we delivered! The 10-hour program gave children and families tools and strategies to combat health issues, food insecurity, and the growing child obesity/ diabetes issue in our communities. Each session included a cooking demo, meal, and a health education component for the participants. Some sessions included physical activity or field trips to grocery stores, garden/ farms, and parks. Parent groups became active health advocates in their communities by volunteering to manage school gardens and local food pantries.
2021-22 Veggie Rx at a Glance
Served over 400 participants, 90% being school aged children
Partnered with 12 community organizations and schools - all schools had at least 85% free or reduced lunch program participation
120 sessions were conducted
A total of 360 staff hours dedicated to organizing, planning, prepping, and conducting sessions.
100% of participants were at/or below federal poverty level
Ada Acosta, Janeth Salazar and Maria Alvarado tell us of their experience with VeggieRx.
Click below to hear from this group of VeggieRx participants.
(In English and Spanish.)
DICP programs went mobile with the inaugural season of the GNG food truck! The truck was a direct health intervention at schools and after school groups by giving kids healthy meals after school. This is a time when kids are eating the unhealthiest snacks. The goal was to give and show children a healthy yet tasty alternative to junk foods. Our fully equipped food truck went to our partners and cooked fresh meals for kids each day of the school year. We also did a Saturday breakfast for weekend sports leagues and youth programs and supported farmers markets by creating recipe bags.
GNG also offered the USDA summer lunch program to children at three parks in Denver and three community partners’ summer programs. Children who frequented the food truck at their school expressed satisfaction with the healthier food alternatives and took recipe cards of the meal to try at home.
2021-22 Greens-N-Grains at a Glance
Over 25,000 meals were served to 6,500 children over the course of the year.
GNG worked with 11 partners and went to 35 events to give children healthy meals.
Over 73 different healthy recipes and alternatives to traditional snacks and meals were made on the truck.
The past year has offered multiple learning opportunities, especially as our older adult participants continue to recover from the social, emotional, and physical impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The most significant learning has been DICP’s ability to adapt programming quickly and nimbly to respond to the needs of the community. DICP’s programs had to evolve over the past two years to resolve issues that were present before but exacerbated by the pandemic. The Parish Seniors program currently provides the following services:
• Weekly in-person day trips / outings
Weekly in-person healthy living sessions,
including meals, activities and education focused on socialization, physical movement, nutrition and mental health related topics that impact older adults
Weekly virtual socialization programming
iPad distribution and technical training sessions
Individualized transportation for medically related
appointments and trips
Senior Advisory Council
Care Navigation and resource referral as well as
monthly wellness check-in calls
2021-22 Parish Seniors at a Glance
Over 150 older adults received services and/or participated in programming
On average 19 socializing activities offered each month
More than 650 single trips were provided
Served 52,250 meals to older adults
Click below to hear from Frankie Casias