Subject: Besson Street -Building Tiny Homes With And For People Without Homes
Occupy Madison Inc is a nonprofit with a history of working with and for persons experiencing homelessness in our community. Together, we have worked to get a permanent comprehensive day resource center, better shelter rules, safer places to sleep at night, as well as access to restrooms, showers, laundry and other basic needs for people experiencing homelessness. However, to date our most exciting project has been OM Build, launched in June 2013. OM Build members and community volunteers are building 99 sq ft houses on wheels that can be parked on the street (if moved frequently). We have been searching for solutions that fit within our community laws and have finally found a solution that is affordable! Our tiny houses cost $5,000 in materials and supplies. We used recycled pallet wood where possible and several businesses have contributed items for our houses. All labor is volunteer labor, occupants of the tiny houses are expected to contribute hundreds of hours of sweat equity to earn the right to live in the houses. We are in the process of buying land to build a tiny village where we can park our houses and for our workshop. We are also hoping to have gardens, and a place to sell our OM Goods. We are looking to build a small eco-village in our community as an example of more sustainable ways to live as well as a way to end homelessness. Our project will take substantial initial investment to get off the ground as we grow into economic stability. It takes a community to raise a village!