Grado de dificultad: 3 (Por el idioma)

Columnista: Roberto

We found this wonderful idea, reported in a photographic article of the Washington Post.

By the way, the illustration above present article comes directly from this article. You can find several others in the original post.

It’s about a phenomenon that seems to be growing: in the suburbs of several cities all around the United States. The concept of “tiny house” is intended to give to lost people what EVERYONE deserve, a home.

  • Kansas City (Missouri), a projet of US Forces Veterans.
  • Austin (Texas), for the “chronically homeless”.
  • Seattle (Washington) has 9 communities of tiny houses (100 square feets large, each).
  • Detroit (Michigan)
  • Nashville (Tennessee)
  • Newfield (New York)

This is not a “shelter”. People don’t beg for food and don’t have to register each day to get the right not to sleep in the street. They are given a roof and four wall for themselves.

These tiny houses are the size of a room; call them a mini studio, if you want.

There is another article in the same news media:

It describes a variation of the same concept: using an ancient mall as a common safe ground to build a community.

Landmark Mall Early phase - Origin Washington Post

Reading and looking at the photos, I was remembering the daily walk I had every morning, by the “Autopista Norte”. Arriving under the bridge of “Calle 100”, there was always someone sleeping on the floor.

Note: I say “was” because I don’t work around there anymore, but I’m sure that this place remains a night open air shelter.

Now, every day, I can see people “selling” garbage plastic bags, and cleaning windshields for a coin or two. Where do these people sleep at night, I’ve no idea.

I see many times entire families, waiting by the traffic light. There’s worse: some are showing off babies to inspire more compassion, to get more coins.

The point is that they have literally nothing, not even a roof over their heads and walls around them to protect them at night

Bogotá started a project of “street shops” to give to “el comercio informal” a chance to be officially part of the community. These booths don’t occupy much place in the streets, and people actually use them… But not enough: a vast majority of the street vendors are wandering out everywhere, because they don’t even have the money to pay the rent for such a booth.

The notion of tiny house under our latitude would be much easier to achieve. Instead of “proudly” wiping out “El Cartucho” or “El Bronx”, sending people away without any place for them, this is what should be done.

Think of it, powerful politicians:

  • You would know where they are (they are home). They would not sleep in the street anymore; they would not be “invading” dangerous and unhealthy places.
  • You would know who they are, meaning that they would exist again.

They need space for a bed to sleep and a table to eat, write, and read, and a shower to clean. A place to regain respect of themselves, to be born again. They need it and they deserve it.

No one knows what will happen tomorrow.