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On being homeless

Anyone going past the Purple Cliffs area may instantly see this homeless camp as a chaotic disaster zone. Buried in garbage, lived-in vehicles, abandoned carts from Home Depot and especially, apparently aimless people and children milling about.

After the recent collapse of the U.S. Highway 160 property deal, there seems to be an empty bucket of ideas and solutions to the Purple Cliff scenario, besides kicking everyone downstream.

Being a previous resident of Santa Cruz, California, I’d like Durango-area residents and La Plata authorities to research a very successful program that Santa Cruz created over 30 years ago, the Homeless Garden Project.

What this reintegrational program is built on is essentially instilling intent, purpose and inspiration in those who feel lost and hopeless, bringing them into a self-supporting, economically enterprising part of community.

A welfare-like system doesn’t inspire or encourage change, and is a useless drain on society but this Homeless Garden Project system found a wise way through these conditions that invigorates change and growth.

Please look into it. https://homelessgardenproject.org/our-mission-our-story/.

Michael Carpenter

Durango