By Melissa Garcia
DENVER (CBS4) – The Denver metro area community is coming together to help a family with four young children who were kidnapped and taken to a polygamous compound.
Officers found the missing Coltharp children hours away from freezing to death, hidden in storage bins in a remote part of the Utah desert in December 2017.
After their rescue during a law enforcement raid, the children are back in Colorado with their mom in a safe and undisclosed location.
An online benefit is raising funds to help the children with basic needs, extra-curricular activities, and to move into a permanent home.
The Denver metro area non-profit organization Clothes to Kids of Denver has offered to help provide wardrobes for the kid free of charge.
Volunteers reached out to CBS4 and to the Coltharp family after seeing a relative’s plea for help. The missing children, ages 4, 6, 7 and 9 were rescued after three months with nothing but what they were wearing.
“(They were) recovered from the desert with the clothes on their back. And that was it. So they basically lost everything,” said Steve Soble, their maternal grandfather.
Clothes to Kids of Denver provides a new wardrobe every year to kids ages 3-18 who are in poverty or in crisis.
“That is a family in crisis,” said Valerie Lunka, Clothes to Kids of Denver’s Development Director.
Lunka said the need is growing.
“At this point in the Denver Metro area, there are over 200,000 students living at or below the poverty line, or living in some sort of crisis. And those are kids who are all eligible to shop at Clothes to Kids of Denver,” she added.
She hopes the store can restore kids’ dignity by giving each them the clothes they need that will allow them to focus on learning instead of what they are wearing.
“Our goal is to make sure that they’re holding their heads up high, leaving our store feeling good and walking into the classroom with the same feeling,” Lunka said.
The clothing given out is all from donations.
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Gently-used clothing can be dropped off in the drop container outside of the store at 2890 S. Colorado Boulevard 24-hours a day.
The non-profit is also in need of volunteers.