PORTLAND, Ore. -- It's barely big enough to fit a bed inside but a tiny home, built by volunteers at the ReBuilding Center in North Portland, ended homelessness for Loki Hamilton.
“I'm just shocked that I’m going to be spending this winter in a house instead of a tent like I was last winter,” she said.
Hamilton arrived at the Hazelnut Grove homeless camp between North Greeley Street and North Interstate Avenue a year ago. She lived in a tent for a while, sometimes out on city streets.
“Cold. Wet. I had to move around a lot because I dealt with sweeps downtown,” she said.
Eventually another camper let her sleep in his tiny house but now she's getting her own space.
“It’s going to allow me to have peace of mind and know that I am safe and that it’s my house and no one can take it away from me or tell me I got to move,” Hamilton said.
Hazelnut Grove is transitioning from tents to more permanent housing. The goal is to have 30 little homes where a jumble of tents once stood.
“It is to help show the whole public that this isn’t a scary thing. If we get a little bit of cooperation, we can do safe, eye-pleasing communities all around the city,” said Joe Bennie one of the camp founders.
On Friday, they were getting help from volunteers and students from Arbor School.
Andy Olshin is part of the citizen's crime commission and thinks Hazelnut Grove may hold a solution and an example for many.
“Well, what it's like for me is to see my kids who are both here, see what we can do together and what these folks were able to do as a community. And show that nothing is impossible,” he said.
Loki looks forward to settling in to her new home, a reality that is still sinking in.
“I almost cried. Honestly. I almost cried I was so happy. It’s like 'Oh my god this is mine!'” Loki said.