PARKER, Colo. — Coloradans may be taken aback to learn there are now more people living in poverty in the suburbs of America than in the country's cities.
But 7Everyday Hero Maranda Hasche is trying to change that.
She volunteers for SECOR, Southeast Community Outreach. Maranda gives her time in the non-profit's Food Market in Parker.
"It is a God-send for us, it really is," said Becky Dietz.
Dietz is one of many people who shops for free food to help make ends meet.
"We had an accident. My husband is unable to work and he had to retire. I had a car accident, unable to work. And found this place. I come here twice a month and I get everything I need. And I also get a friendship. This is like family," said Dietz.
Hashe has volunteered at the food market for three years.
"We are giving them food and giving them hope, and whatever they need while they're here. Maybe a smile, maybe a hug," said Hasche.
"She cares for people well, and loves them well. And that's what we want to do," said Mike Dworak, development dir., SECOR.
SECOR is a faith-based non-profit that serves thousands of families struggling in places that few may think of, including Arapahoe, Douglas, and Elbert Counties.
"So, as we drive around Parker and Highlands Ranch, the nice areas, that's one in every nine homes having brutal discussions today," said Dworak.
SECOR also gets food to families with something called Food for Thought. That program sends school kids home with food for the weekend.
"Last school year we served about 400 kids a week," said Lisa Long, Food for Thought coordinator.
SECOR touches one thousand families a month with the help of outstanding volunteers like Maranda Hasche.
"Your neighbor could be struggling and you have no idea. So, it's a great place to volunteer because it helps people who live right next to you," said Hasche.
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