POSADA of Pueblo paving change in community during pandemic

POSADA of Pueblo
Posted at 7:12 PM, Mar 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-02 21:12:55-05

PUEBLO —Throughout the past year, many local nonprofit organizations have worked to make sure those who need help are taken care of, even as many of these groups faced their own challenges. All week long, News5 is highlighting some of these organizations, and today we're focusing on POSADA of Pueblo. The organization has been providing housing and support services for people in the community for the past 30 years. Part of the non-profit, is the Elko Family Shelter, which is currently housing 11 families and approximately 25 people. LaTanya Yarbrough, a case manager for the organizations says the shelter has been full and running strong since last March. While so much has changed since the pandemic began, she says, "our priorities have always been the same. We take care of families with children, we take care of veterans, we take care of youth." Yarbrough says the needs of homeless in the community have also changed over the past year. "Of course we've seen the need go up because of COVID, I mean COVID hurt a lot of people," said Yarbrough. Since last year, they've helped people struggling with paying bills to keep the lights on and finding a place to live. The city of Pueblo gave the organization $150,000 to help people in Pueblo and those like the Thomas family. "We have four kids and it was to the point where we had no money and no food," said Cassondra Thomas, who says her husband lost her job during the pandemic. They also lost their home and were unsure about where to go next. "Things got worse, before they got better. If it weren't for POSADA, I don't know where we'd be." The Thomas family is now one of the 11 families being housed at the Elko Family Shelter, which provides housing for up to two months for those in need. Jeanie Owens is also staying at the shelter, and says the organization is helping her get back on her feet and into a new home. "They were able to give us a roof, give us food, put us somewhere warm during the winter," said Owens. When we get into a new place, "if we don't have the rent or deposit they can help us with that, and that eases a lot of our concerns." The help these families are receiving means they're one step closer to getting back a sense of normalcy. "Hopefully we can overcome this pandemic, because it's been hard for all of us," said Thomas. Since the pandemic began, the organization purchased another shelter in Pueblo, and turned it into a COVID shelter. It opened in November and is a place where people can quarantine or recover from the virus. Since opening, the shelter has housed more than 30 people. The organization also provides help to veterans. Currently, they have $16,000 to help veterans in the community falling behind on bills like mortgage, rent, and utilities. For more information about the organization, click here.