DENVER — Most pedestrians walk briskly by. Their hurried temperaments and forward gazes tell anyone sitting on Denver’s sidewalks that they just don’t have enough time to read the signs and hear the pleas for food or money.
But Mark Rodgers walks right up to each and every person he meets on Denver’s streets. In December, with temperatures dropping, he connected with dozens of Denver’s homeless to offer a meal, and share a short conversation.
“We come down here about four times a month, and we give lunches to homeless people,” Rodgers explained. “It’s a blessing for me to come out and help others.”
Rodgers knows the struggle of Denver’s streets, especially as the temperatures drop. He knows what it’s like to not have a place to sleep, or food to eat. He is homeless himself. To him, that’s why the work is so important.
“I’m going through the same situation right now,” said Rodgers. “I’m trying to better my life. But it makes me feel good in my heart to help others and see somebody smile.”
Rodgers works with an organization called Filling the Void, operating in several cities across the country to feed the hungry.
“We’ve been on the streets in Denver in Aurora, over 70 times this year. And we fed over 7,000 people,” said Kelly Swan, the co-founder of Filling the Void. “Mark has become one of our volunteers here on the streets.”
One of the leaders helped Rodgers earlier in 2021 to get a hot meal. He was so inspired he now helps others find hot meals as well.
Any time I get the opportunity to come out to help others, I do it, because it gives me joy to see somebody smile. I just enjoy helping others, said Rodgers. “I’m thankful to God for me the way I am today.”