Denver’s Nonprofits for Homeless, Seniors, Veterans Benefit from Students’ Healthcare Help
Five Denver School of Nursing (DSN) students and an assistant professor led community outreach and assisted in open clinics, dedicating over 100 hours to Denver area nonprofits serving homeless and senior populations and veterans undergoing treatment at the Veterans Administration (VA) Hospital in Aurora, said Marguerite Distel, RN, DSN assistant professor (www.denverschoolofnursing.edu).
“Every quarter, DSN students engage in service-learning nationally and globally as part of their participation in the nursing college’s Global Health Perspectives (GHP) program. Twice a year, DSN students apply their skills to benefit Denver’s nonprofit community, facilitating food distribution, performing health assessments, providing meal service and distributing help wherever it’s needed,” said Distel, who also serves as DSN’s GHP academic coordinator.
At Colfax Community Network (http://colfaxcommunitynetwork.org), students worked in the nonprofit’s open clinic, providing healthcare outreach for children and families experiencing abuse, addiction, crime, harassment, hunger, loss of employment and neglect.
To provide meal service for Senior Support Services’ low-income and homeless seniors, DSN students raised $2,000 among themselves, and cooked and served breakfast three times in one week for over 225 seniors. (http://www.seniorsupportservices.org/about.html)
For Denver Urban Ministries (http://denum.org), students accompanied client families through the intake process, connected those families to resources, and helped families through the food pantry so they could choose healthy and nutritionally balanced food options.
In a clinical partnership with the Veteran’s Administration Hospital, students assisted with procedures in the emergency department and in urgent care. Under the supervision of their clinical faculty, students attended to intravenous therapy and diabetes assessment
The five DSN students who participated included Caitlin Connett, Katie Lightner, Woobin Lim, Amanda Raskind and Ellis Whalen, and were mentored by DSN faculty member Toni Esperanza, assistant professor and a mental healthcare specialist.
DSN will conduct clinical internships with homeless and at-need populations of inner-city organizations every six months as part of the nursing college’s GHP program. The next effort will take place in June 2016.
About Denver School of Nursing (DSN)
Denver School of Nursing, 1401 19th St., Denver, is a private, post-secondary college that provides educational programs and training for nursing professionals. The college specializes in offering rigorous curricula, clinical site-based academic programs toward associate and bachelor degrees in nursing and distance-delivered academic programs toward a bachelor degree in nursing. DSN is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), (www.hlcommission.org), (800-621-7440). Its associate and baccalaureate programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, GA 30326 (404-975-5000). DSN is granted full approval for its associate and bachelors nursing programs by the Colorado State Board of Nursing. National Council of State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (SARA) approval is maintained through the Colorado Department of Higher Education. For more information, call 303-292-0015 or visit www.denverschoolofnursing.edu.