Local organization plans to create small shelter village to help homeless in Mobile – WKRG News 5
MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) – Several towns across the country have created tiny residential villages, aimed at helping homeless people get off the streets and back on their feet.
A local group is trying to do the same here in the port city.
The Driftwood housing project has launched its plans to create a small Sunday family village, at the Central Presbyterian Church.
According to project manager Dale Pfeiffer, this organization was made up of homeless advocacy groups and volunteers who simply had a passion for helping homeless people and making a difference in their own community.
“What we’re offering is a little village of houses where people can live for two years and settle down,” Pfeiffer said. “And deal with any issues they may have. Get social workers to help them and put them in touch with customer services. And basically, just love them to regain stability.
The original small village is still in the planning stage.
However, according to Pfeiffer, this village will provide more to the homeless than shelter, electricity and food.
Another beneficial aspect of the small family village is that those who reside there will have an address, allowing them to apply for jobs.
“The small original villages of course have internal and external security,” Pfeffer said. “So the external security could be a door. Internally, you have referees. The referees just help keep the peace in the village. They usually have a facility where they can go to the bathroom, take a shower, do their laundry.
Pfeiffer says the homeless population here in Mobile is a major problem and says the problem is only getting worse.
“It’s a huge problem and it’s growing. Every year we probably have 200 more homeless people. Right now the estimate is between 600 and 800.”
Volunteers, including Hank Cadel, say now is the time to address homelessness in our community.
“There was never a place for the homeless person to shower, get their mail and put their things away,” Cadel said. “It’s a wonderful proposal, it deserves our support and it’s time for our community to come to terms with this homelessness issue.”
Those who stay in the small village will need to qualify and pass a background check.
The Driftwood Housing Project plans to meet at the Central Presbyterian Church located at 1260 Dauphin Street every 4th Sunday of the month to continue planning for the establishment of the village.