Homeless village in Olympia used as a model

KING 5

A non-profit organization is operating Quixote Village in Olympia -- a tiny house community for the homeless.

The village is operated by a non-profit called Panza  -- named for Don Quixote’s faithful servant Sancho Panza --and is located in an industrial area on the city’s west side. It includes 30 small huts. Each is 144-square-feet with electricity and heat, along with access to addiction services.

It's free to stay as long as each resident would like, as long as they contribute to the village community.

"We tell our residents when they move in, it's up to you, it's what you make of it," Raul Salazar, program manager since Quixote Village opened in 2013, said.

Jimmy Christensen has called Quixote home since then and today finds himself recovering from his drug addiction thanks to services offered in the village.

"In a normal apartment setting, I'd probably isolate more. But here at the village, I can be social," he said.

Panza is in the process of opening similar communities in Pierce and Mason Counties.

Tiny house villages are becoming more common in the area as communities seek to address the ongoing homeless crisis. Seattle has six tiny house villages operated by the Low Income Housing Institute.

The latest 'Point-in-Time' count found 579 homeless residents living in Thurston County. That same count found 4,505 homeless residents in King County and 1,321 in Pierce County.


 

 

© 2017 KING-TV


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