DONATING TO A NONPROFIT IS NOT THE SAME AS HELPING THE HOMELESS!
By Max R. Weller
Boulder, CO is lagging behind more progressive cities in the most cost-effective way to house those homeless people who are ready, willing, and able to assume more responsibility for themselves. Consider 11 Tiny House Villages Redefining Home for a look at a far better model than the $6 million plus 31-unit permanent supportive housing project at 1175 Lee Hill (about $194,000 per resident), a collaboration between Boulder Housing Partners and Boulder Shelter for the Homeless. Bridge House has its own $4 million plus project in the works as well in south Boulder, to house only 48 residents in a “transitional living” program (about $83,000 per person).
It seems to me that Boulder’s nonprofits are intent on keeping the chronically homeless, in particular, helpless and needy and dependent on the social services system; nobody except those working in the dysfunctional shelter/services industry and various government agencies which support the poor and homeless is benefitting by this corrupt state of affairs. Granted, a big part of the do-gooders’ benefit is the chance to FEEL GOOD about themselves (in addition to a salary).
Why not something like this here in Boulder? See:
Quixote Village in Olympia, WA
Quoting from the article linked to above:
Originally a self-governing tent camp of homeless adults in Olympia, Washington, Quixote Village now consists of 30 tiny houses, a community garden, and a common space with showers, laundry facilities and living and dining space.
Goodness knows, with about 70 square miles of Open Space surrounding our fair city, there is more than sufficient room for several Tiny House Villages dedicated to the needs of Boulder County’s own homeless people. Frankly, the Homeless Philosopher doesn’t give a damn if the inflated value of McMansions up in the Foothills is reduced by 10% or 20% — if it means that the most vulnerable among us are housed in safety and dignity.
Talk is cheap. Time to walk the walk, Boulderites! Simply writing another fat check to a local nonprofit isn’t dealing with the issue of homelessness; share the public land which you’ve been using as a moat around your castles for decades . . .
“Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty.” — Mother Teresa