How One Los Angeles Man is Taking the Issue of Homelessness into His Own Hands

When Elvis Summers was approached by Irene “Smokie” McGhee for his unwanted recycling, he knew something was not right. After talking to Smokie, Summers found out that she had been without a home or shelter for almost a decade. That’s when Summers decided to lend a helping hand.

Using materials he bought from his local hardware store, Summers built Smokie a small house equipped with a lockable door, windows, proper roofing and wheels — to keep her new home legal. In LA, vehicles are permitted to stay parked in one spot for 72 hours, after that Smokie must move her home up the street for another temporary spot.

Summers said his inspiration for building this small home came from the Tiny House Movement. Smokie’s new home only took him five days to build and cost around $500.

Summers posted a video on YouTube showing the process of building this tiny home and it went viral. After receiving donations from strangers, Summers plans on building more homes like Smokie’s to help others in his area.

In an interview with CBC News, Summers said, "It's not the solution. It's just the first step."

 

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