We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Livovich and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jennifer, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
Prior to becoming homeless, I had no idea what community felt or looked like nor the desire to contribute to one.
While some might consider the near five years I spent outside the worst chapter of my life, I consider it one of my best because it gave me my life’s purpose which is to maximize the time I have left to making my community better.
I found a real lack of welcoming spaces accepting of the unique expertise of a person previously homeless. It was a very challenging time having to realize that the stigma of homelessness can follow you long after your not.
Rather than give up, I decided to create a space for myself and others that possess lived experience. I structured Feet Forward, a 501-c.3., which is built on the foundation of lived experience and now has five peers with local lived experience.
We are out in Boulder every week offering peer support and navigation services along with a housing-focused street outreach program for individuals experiencing homelessness.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Aside from founding and leading Feet Forward, I now sit on a variety of local boards and commissions like Boulder’s Police Oversight Panel and the Housing Advisory Board and the state’s Department of Local Affairs Lived Experience Advisory Panel.
I’m also on the cusp of graduating from Colorado State University with their undergraduate Human Services degree and have every intention of attending CU-DENVER or DENVER UNIVERSITY to obtain my Masters of Public Administration on a community development track.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Depending on the guest, I might take them to Pearl Street since it’s a space relatively unique to Boulder. There’s always a trip to Estes Park and to the Flatirons. Coming from near Chicago, most of my friends or family have never seen anything like it.
And, naturally, any guest of mine will attend the outreach event I host and meet some of Boulder’s Best, the homeless.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
People will ask me if there was a provider or a person who helped me get my life together. My answer every time is Elizabeth Robinson.
She was hired as the Boulder Municipal Court’s first-ever court navigator and she was absolutely instrumental in my journey.
Today, she sits on the board of Feet Forward.