LONGMONT, Colo. -- The battle against homelessness and drug abuse in Longmont is being fought by six young women.
This team of women go places many of us might stay away from. However, it's all part of their job and mission to help people in trouble.
One of the city’s toughest jobs, includes a walk in the park where those women try to help get troubled people off the streets.
The number of homeless began to rise here in recent years as Longmont's population began to boom.
Emily Van Doran heads the city’s department, which oversees efforts to help people help themselves.
Van Doren said, “… the most important aspect of it to me is to see the impact our case managers have on improving quality of life for people who are struggling with substance dependence and mental health challenges…”.
Morgan Popek is one of those case managers who we found visiting a man – named Rico, who was once homeless.
Rico said, “… I didn’t have anything when I moved in here. Not a thing...”.
He was referred to her agency by Longmont police.
Fighting back tears, Rico said, “… I’m very grateful for you… You guys are the most wonderful people. You're angels to me…”.
Popek loves her mission because, “… it's (involves) getting to hang out with people every day and getting to know them and their strengths and their struggles…. and kind of using those to help them achieve their goals and using those to help them build a life they want for themselves…”.
Longmont's programs have helped hundreds of people...many of whom get in trouble less often.
Rico added, “… I wouldn’t be right here if it wasn’t for them. For any of them. I would still be on the streets. I wouldn’t even be alive to tell you the truth…”.
One life saved.. the search for others - continues.
If you know of anyone who might need help in Longmont, we’ve posted a list the agencies that may be able to help: