It looks like a parking meter standing straight on a city street, but this street-side meter collects change "for change," a community effort to help the homeless.
Like the city of Denver, the California city of San Luis Obispo has strategically placed donation meters in busy areas. (Denver’s donation meters collect about $100,000 per year for homeless services, and have reduced the number of panhandlers on city streets.)
Goals of the San Luis Obispo program, as per their website include:
- Community Awareness & Coordinated Responses – build community awareness and support for coordinated responses to reduce homelessness
- Enhance Public Safety – Improve public safety by reducing the number of program resistant individuals that support their life styles and addictions through panhandling.
- Services – Provide better access to supportive services that promote long-term stability and improved functioning