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I’ve been homeless, hungry, dirty and without hope…so every month, I donate to the Homeless Shelter here in Perth WA.
Therefore, the cause I’m passionate about – Homelessness. Particularly how to get homeless people a SAFE place to sleep at night.
I have written a prototype for a project I’ve named “A good night’s sleep” where we build Japanese ‘pod/capsule hotels’ for the homeless in the main areas of the city so that we can provide the homeless somewhere safe to sleep each night. It will of course be FREE and be funded by taxes. I know I wouldn’t mind my tax dollars going to the homeless. I hope everyone feels the same.
My first run at the Project was too ambitious.
I wanted to have a free laundromat attached to the Pod Hotel, missions coming along with food, maybe get supermarket chains involved and get them to bring their bread/fruit at the end of the day (they throw it away) and we could give it out to homeless people. I wanted to have male/female shower cubicles, free soap and thick, fluffy towels so the homeless could have a shower and sit in their towels (I was imagining plush bath robes in this version) while their clothes were getting washed dried. It was going to be BEAUTIFUL. I wanted to link the Pod Hotels to Social Security services so that the homeless could have access to courses, job opportunities, study…you name it, I wanted it included.
Then I thought about budget and when you’re trying to convince a Government to take on a new project, you can’t be building beauty salons/restaurants/laundromats for the homeless. You have to stick to the basics and the cost of everything has to come RIGHT DOWN.
So my final draft is this:
A Japanese pod hotel with doors that lock from the inside to give people a sense of privacy, comfort and safety.
Each pod will have vents that will keep the pod cool in the summer and warm in winter – hopefully that will get rid of the need to provide sheet/blankets (we’ll still definitely provide pillows though) and will bring down supply costs and costs of laundry. The pods will be made of recycled wood panelling on the inside (it looks lovely – hopefully I can find a picture and paste it here for you) or maybe a wood-look-alike plastic sheeting (vinyl?) – we’ll see – and will be easily cleaned/hosed down every morning when the inhabitants have to leave.
Each pod will have a thick, plastic mattress to sleep on (easily cleaned by being wiped down with antibacterial) and inflatable pillows with combustable/removable/easily recycled pillow covers.
At 8:30am every morning, the pod door-locks will automatically unlock and the doors will swing open. Sorry guys, no sleeping in.
Two (or more?) security guards will keep watch in the night (now we’re providing job opportunities for people who need it – yass!) and in the morning cleaners (more job opportunities! Woohoo!) will come in and clean each pod out so they are ready for use that following night.
Simple. Easy. Sustainable. Helpful.
I just need to get my project Grant out to the Minister for Homelessness here in Perth and hope they agree to take it on.