If it wasn’t for Mile High WorkShop, Bill Kral said he wouldn’t be clean or alive today. “It was at a time in my life when staying clean was a goal, but I had no way to do that,” said Kral.
That’s when he found Mile High WorkShop. Mile High WorkShop is an employment and job training program for people facing barriers to work like homelessness, incarceration, and addiction. The program specializes in assembly, kitting, banner upcycling, and second chances. Kral completed the program and moved through the ranks all the way up to production director.
“There were a lot of speed bumps, but the most important thing is that I’m now able to pass along some skills to other people,” said Kral. “That helps me stay clean and makes life worth living.” “It’s been a fantastic journey to watch,” said Rochelle Hinskton, operations and development director for Mile High WorkShop.
Mile High Workshop works in various stages. First is the introduction to the program; then skills training, where they build their skills and learn how to go to work every day and do a job efficiently; finally transition into the community to hopefully find a job. “People that come into the workshop, come here because they want to make the right decisions. They deserve to dream about all the amazing things they can do, and I think that’s what the program gives to them,” said Hinskton.
With the support of The Denver Foundation and its donors, Mile High WorkShop can continue to create economic stability by providing bus passes, rental assistance, and help with their GEDs. “I don’t know if the organization would be around without that type of support,” said Kral.
The Denver Foundation believes that economic opportunity is achievable when communities have the tools and resources to build wealth, increase assets, and create local and just economies. That is why The Denver Foundation supports Mile High WorkShop’s commitment to investing in our future generations. This nonprofit has been a grantee of the foundation and its donors since 2017, and a Community Grants Program grantee for 2022.
“It feels amazing to see somebody change their lives with the work we do around here,” said Kral. “It helps keep me on the right path to know that we’re all going through this life together and improving our lives.”
Photos courtesy: Armando Generyo