KITCHEN – Kitchener’s Higher Tent Metropolis is a mannequin different cities are striving for as further assist for these experiencing homelessness, and a neighborhood man wrote the last word information on how you can construct these small residence communities.
Native activist, creator and founding father of BetterStreet Tony D’Amato Stortz has labored at A Higher Tent Metropolis for over a 12 months and presently advises the Hamilton Alliance for Tiny Shelters and the cities of Belleville and Peterborough.
“I feel it is an thought whose time has come,” stated D’Amato Stortz. “We’re seeing a rise in unhidden homelessness throughout the nation, and governments and civil society representatives are wringing their palms over what we do about it.
“And right here at Kitchener-Waterloo, we’ve got an answer that works higher than anybody might assume.”
An nearly 100-page e-book entitled “The Home Alone: A Information to Constructing a Small Home Group” describes how you can construct a neighborhood like little homes on Ardelt Avenue in Kitchener. The e book was launched on-line on Monday.
Now residence to round 50 residents, A Higher Tent Metropolis has survived two removals and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Autonomy is essential to neighborhood success, stated D’Amato Stortz.
“The shelters work rather well … however I feel this mannequin works for individuals who need this dignity and wish this independence,” he stated.
The neighborhood consists of small homes with wrapped helps and entry to hydro and working water.
Residents can lock their doorways and management who comes and goes to their residence. This method “affords a combination of dignity and autonomy that doesn’t exist wherever else within the system,” stated D’Amato Stortz.
An estimated 1,000 individuals had been homeless within the Waterloo area on the finish of final 12 months, greater than 400 of whom had been sleeping on the road or in camps.
Native politicians and people working with individuals experiencing homelessness counsel that the quantity has elevated.
Knowledge submitted by the Waterloo Area as a part of a lawsuit for the eviction of individuals dwelling in tents within the Victoria Avenue North area means that the area’s homeless and household data system numbers greater than 1,600 individuals.
D’Amato Stortz stated there are extra alternatives right here to create further small residence communities, noting that every neighborhood and neighborhood will face totally different challenges.
“The Higher Metropolis of Tents just isn’t a one-time joyful miracle,” he stated. “The Higher Tent Metropolis is a mannequin that may be replicated as a result of it actually serves a bunch of individuals, and these are individuals who have been underappreciated.”
D’Amato Stortz wrote the e book after being approached by Paul Motz of the Motz Household Basis. The thought was that Motz would fund the writing mission on the situation that, as soon as accomplished, it will be accessible at no cost to everybody.
Writing took about three months and is obtainable on-line right here.