If you are homeless, daily life is all about survival. There is no time for arts or leisure while living on the streets.
But homeless veterans have an artistic outlet and a chance for renewal thanks to 7Everyday Hero Jerry Halsor.
He volunteers to teach a sculpting class at the V.A.'s Valor Point, a residential rehabilitation program for homeless veterans.
"It's just a sculpture therapy class for the veterans who are here. You have to draw what's in your head to determine what the hand is doing. What is the body doing? It's kind of an inner expression," Halsor said.
Halsor served in the U.S. Air Force back in the 1950s and later became a professional sculptor. He knows well the healing benefits of creating art.
"It allows me to do something that I didn't think I could do before. I've had four strokes and about the only thing I can do is read and play on the internet. This actually lets me do something creative," said veteran Francis Collins.
"It's something you can do with your hands. You get to make something. I like it. I like being here. I've been living on the streets or in my truck," said veteran Rodney Peter.
Valor Point in Lakewood helps veterans transition toward independent living. Halsor could have given money to that effort, but he felt sculpting might also help shape their futures.
"It's a win-win, as far as I'm concerned, and that's why I enjoy doing it," Halsor said.
"I think he's great. He comes in here and volunteers his time. And he teaches people something that he enjoys doing. And it must relax people because it brings up their spirit, their attitudes and how they feel about themselves." Peter said.
"The purpose is to get them to work; to think about it. And to take two hours out of their day in a different mental setting. It's relaxing, I hope. There's no pressure, there's no grade," Halsor said.
Mitch Jelniker anchors Denver7 in the mornings from 4:30 to 7 a.m. He also features a different 7Everyday Hero each week on 7NEWS. Follow Mitch on Facebook and Twitter. Nominate a 7Everyday Hero here.