This homeless camp, which has existed for months under the Detroit-Superior bridge, was cleared out by Cleveland Metropark Rangers. (Courtesy of Kerry McCormack). This image was Published: Jan. 11, 2019, 3:30 p.m. on Cleveland.com
This is just one example of what our unsheltered community members have to face when trying to navigate the lives they live based off of the resources they have.
(Irene "Smokie" McGhee, a woman who had been sleeping on the streets.
We see housing as the first initiative in creating a sustainable lifestyle. Providing someone shelter, allows a safe space for them to begin their journey in healing and recovery. The vision is to make sure every human being belongs to a community that promotes growth through the aid in resources, community engagement, and education.
In 2023, PathAway Foundation will strive to make this vision a reality and provide Tiny home communities that will house members within our neighborhoods finding themselves in troubled times. The members included in these homes will include but are not limited to unsheltered parties, individuals in search of recovery resources, as well as fostered and or emancipated youth. We will also service families who may have endured hardship or loss of property. This foundation is based on the principles that no human being should be unsheltered regardless of what caused them to be.
(Jesse Russell creator of Hiatus Homes created this village in Bend, Oregon)
Our approach to eliminating homelessness in Cleveland is simple. We find vacant lots, abandoned properties, untamed fields and any given location that has been unutilized and uncared for; and we build. We are looking for locations that support the well being of our community members and that wish to house and participate in the healing process of our people.
In these communities there will be individual housing supported by a number of service providers organized by the organizations in which we partner with. The homes will be equipped with solar powered energy, and a community water tank system that will supply each individual shelter with running water. There will be a cooling system attached for hotter summer days as well as windows that residents can enjoy the fresh air and the sounds of nature from. Amenities that can be found within the shelter are a microwave, a twin size bed, some storage compartments and a closet space. We have designed these shelters with the ability to personalize the individuals creative niche as we are encouraging all community members to be unique during their stay with us.
A community room where members can access resources, education, and on occasion entertainment will be within the proximity of the shelters. Here we can also host feasts, ceremonies, and events together as a community united. There will be an on site nursing facility where nurses will be available twenty four hours per day to attend to minor medical needs. Members will have access to a food pantry where they will receive breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Access to snacks and drinks in between will also be accessible.
Not only do we wish to house our unsheltered community members but we will also take time to share in a community garden where they can learn the skill of agriculture through hands on participation. Fresh fruits and vegetables will be a part of their every day diet as we transfer from the garden straight to our tables.
These communities are just the foundation of what we are working towards. We encourage each member to transition from our communities into permanent housing as we take them through a course of activities that include but are not limited to medical evaluation, counseling and mentoring, educational services; where life skills are the basis of learning; as well as focusing on bringing awareness to the fundamentals of intelligence over emotion and the principles that outline the process in which an individual can heal.