donation meters.

photo © rich miller.

i came across this article in one of the magazines i work with (affordable housing finance magazine) and thought it was awesome – a very viable and interesting way to help the homeless in denver. i think it would be a *great* idea to have something like this in dc.

Mile-High Meters
Denver is placing 50 more donation meters along downtown streets to raise money to help the homeless. They are in addition to 36 existing meters that were installed in early 2007.
The meter program is designed to increase awareness about Denver’s 10- year plan to end homelessness and to redirect money given to panhandlers.
“Every coin that goes into these donation meters goes through the Mile High United Way and back out to the homeless providers in Denver to create new housing, jobs, and services for the homeless,” said Jamie Van Leeuwen, project manager of Denver’s Road Home.
“Since implementation of Denver’s Road Home, panhandling on the 16th Street Mall is down 92 percent, overall homelessness is down 11 percent, and chronic homelessness is down 36 percent.”
The initial 36 meters collected 70,690 coins in their first six months of operation, raising $8,446.50.
In addition, each meter is backed by a sponsor who pays $1,000 per year.

click here for the article as it originally appeared on



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2 responses to “donation meters.

  1. Chris

    What a great idea! The City of Orlando has an ordinance you can not feed the homeless within the city limits, so I guess they have no where to go get food except to break in to homes or businesses. Come on Orlando!!

  2. ouch! i’ve actually heard rumors that some cities were enforing that kind of thing – how terrible is that? just awful! here in dc there is at least one awesome resource center i know of – miriam’s kitchen – that not only feeds the homeless but also provides counseling, job placement, housing placement and more. a hand out AND a hand up – exactly what struggling citizens need.

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