Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Homes for Less: Vancouver Homeless Housing Project Finally Finds a Home

By: Amy Juschka

Last year, students at Emily Carr in Vancouver took on their first to-scale assignment. They built a series of 64 square foot homes, costing $1, 500 apiece, to help with the homeless crisis in Vancouver. The students went and talked to the homeless in order to get an idea of what was needed in the homes. The homeless emphasized their need for an address so they could apply for jobs, as well as a place to rest and keep their belongings safe. The students took this into account, providing shelving that could double as furniture. The public took longer than hoped to respond to the effort. The students and their director talked with the city governments of Vancouver, Burnaby and New Westminster, but nowhere was willing to use the houses as homeless shelters until recently. The Vancouver Aboriginal Transformative Justice Society plans to adopt the shelters and place them behind their current facilities so that occupants can have access to amenities.

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