These blueprints for a tiny house have big goals.
Nathan Monk is planning to move his family of five into a 300-square-foot house to raise awareness for the homeless, Today.com reported. Using this first tiny home as the prototype, Monk hopes to distribute the design for free to help provide affordable housing to families in need.
The inspiration for the project came from Monk’s childhood in poverty.
“We lost our original house, and then we began bouncing back and forth between friends’ houses, hotels and cars,” he told Today.com. “A mythical promise had been built up by our parents that once everything was OK and we were out of poverty, we’d get to go on an epic vacation to Disney World.”
The trip to Disney World never happened, but Monk went on to work on developing homeless solutions, and wrote a book about his childhood called “Chasing the Mouse.” Part of his plan is to use the proceeds from the book, in addition to a GoFundMe campaign, to build these tiny homes, he explains in a video on his website, Tiny House, Big Solution.
Monk had learned about small home initiatives, “but families were being excluded from that equation,” he said. So, he hopes his family can be a model for this possible solution.
Currently, Monk is living with his three young kids and wife, Tashina, in a 1,200-square-foot house in Florida, Today.com reported. Along with two architects, Monk is creating a three-bedroom concept that he’ll share on his website free of charge.
“Our hope is that nonprofits, civic groups, municipalities and individuals will be able to use this free material in order to create free or affordable living,” he wrote on the site.
In November, the Wisconsin-based activist group Occupy Madison completed a similar initiative by building three tiny houses for homeless residents in the community. The project was completed just in time for the holidays, giving shelter to three different couples, Al Jazeera reported. Similar to Monk, Luca Clemente of Occupy Madison had heard about the tiny house movement and thought it could work as an homeless solution.
“We had heard about these tiny houses in the media, but mostly in the context of middle-class Americans downsizing their lifestyle,” Clemente told Al Jazeera. “We saw that it would be possible to do the same thing for the homeless.”
Monk plans to distribute the designs over the course of the next year, once the prototype is complete.