A Visit to the World's Only City-Sanctioned Homeless Camp

Dignity Village photoPeak Moment TV/Video screen capture

A few weeks back, I wrote about a charity providing solar power to a tent city in Lubbock, Texas. Here's another project seeking to make the lives of the homeless more bearable and perhaps a little more sustainable.

Dignity Village in Portland, Oregon is a city-sanctioned homeless camp. In fact, our host Jon Hawkes claims it is the only one of its kind in the world. Organized as a non-profit corporation, the community operates on land owned by the city, but managed by the community itself. The site features a greenhouse, gardens, houses, business enterprises and a free store of donated items, as well as showers and high-speed internet which is open daily for use by anyone in the community.

As anyone who has experience of community building and alternative ways of organizing knows, there are always challenges in living and working together like this. And most videos about intentional communities tend to lean heavily on the idealistic "isn't this all wonderful side". (The refreshingly reflective piece on an anarchist bed and breakfast was a an exception to that rule.) So it's nice to see the ever awesome Peak Moment TV touch on issues like rodent infestations and what was done to alleviate them. (You'll have to watch the video to find out.)

A Visit to the World's Only City-Sanctioned Homeless Camp
Dignity Village in Portland, Oregon, is not your typical municipal solution to homelessness. It just might be better.

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