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Here’s how you can help those most in need in Colorado by getting rid of your old stuff

Written by: Tamara Chuang

Until about two-and-a-half years ago, Bobby Dainko was living in his car, addicted to meth. 

Today, he’s clean and works full time at Spring Back Colorado Mattress Recycling, a nonprofit in Commerce City that recycles used mattresses that would otherwise end up in landfills. The nonprofit deliberately employs folks like Dainko — graduates of a nearby addiction treatment program.

“Yeah, I was living in my car right down the street here,” said Dainko, pointing out the window from an air-conditioned office where he answers calls and schedules mattress pickups. “I just got sick and tired of what it takes to live homeless. I used to think, ‘Oh, you’re homeless. You don’t have to do anything.’ But no, it’s a daily battle. Hour by hour even. Where am I going? What am I doing? I did that for almost a year and got so sick of it. I called Wellness Court and they welcomed me back at 2 in the morning.”

Dainko had previously worked at Spring Back after graduating from the nearby Stout Street Foundation substance abuse recovery program in 2017. But he relapsed a year later, after his mother passed away. He just wasn’t done with drugs, he says now. But he believes he’s finally kicked his addiction for good. And Spring Back gave him his job back.

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