Home Builders Foundation was able to relocate nine sleeping pods for homeless veterans in Clackamas over the holidays, and contributed $20,000 to assist with the move. Many private, local companies and volunteers helped make the project a great success. Kabuki Strength, a company owned by HBF Past President Rudy Kadlub announced before Christmas they would contribute $10,569 to the effort – funds generated through an end-of-the-year online sale.
Home Builders Foundation embarked on the mission to relocate eight sleeping pods (originally built for the 2019 Pod Challenge) when staff learned the pods intended for a village at the Grotto never materialized. A lone pod built by LMC Construction – constructed from a job site mock-up – was moved in early February to bring the total number of sleeping pods relocated to nine.
Sleeping pods are small, eight by twelve foot structures designed by PSU Architecture students to transitionally house people experiencing homelessness. The pods provide an alternative for men and women living on the streets to have a dry, well-insulated, secure space to live while they look for permanent housing and employment. The cost to build pods is minimal compared to traditional shelter housing, typically $50 per square foot. The original 15 pod Clackamas Veterans Village was built by PSU students on Veterans Day of 2018.
HBF relied on some heavy lifting from longtime HBA members Precision Truss & Lumber to move several of the 6,000 lb. pods. General Manager, Tom Martin, whose business happens to be within a couple hundred feet of the Veterans Village deployed
his boom truck and operators to help lift three of the oversized pods into place. Eric Olsen, a Navy reservist, whose business Toyota Lifts NW is also adjacent to the pod village donated a heavy duty all-terrain forklift to the project. John Vitro, a Navy veteran and owner of Vitro Electric located in nearby Happy Valley, donated his crew to wiring the pods.
Jonny Fisher, Development Manager with Do Good Multnomah watched it all go down and was very appreciative of the community effort orchestrated by HBF staff members to add beds to the program. “These pods are important to our
community because they provide a service that is difficult to find for our veterans – temporary supportive housing.” Fisher who works daily with veterans in the pod village says in its first year, DGM was able to move 17 vets into permanent, supportive housing. The average age of guests are 60 years-old and stay on average 161 days. The beefed up village will now house 24 veterans. A point-in-time count in 2017 identified there were upwards of 80 veterans living on the streets of Clackamas County.
In addition to the above-mentioned donors, HBF would like to thank Pape Rents, Pioneer Rentals, The City Repair Project, Americorps NCCC – Pacific Region, Gerlock Towing and Heavy Haul, Ness Campbell, Clackamas Landscape Supply, Johnson Creek Rentals, Clackamas County, PSU Center for Public Interest Design, Communitecture, The Grotto, Tony Midson, Julia Mollner and Taylorsmith Sustainable Construction for all your help in getting this project completed!