An Arizona nonprofit is building sustainable tiny homes for unhoused youth and working with partner organizations to help tenants access medical and employment services that are critical to their long-term success and well-being. I Am You 360 plans to build a first village of tiny homes on its own land in Tucson, Arizona, right next to the nonprofit’s headquarters. Even as the cost of building tiny homes keeps increasing, the nonprofit believes that it is all the more important to invest in housing programs for young people who do not have a safe shelter in which to live. According to a U.S. Department of Urban Development (HUD) report, there were more than 34,000 unhoused, unaccompanied youth under the age of 25 on a single night in January 2020, and the overall number of unhoused individuals has increased nationwide for four years in a row. Not only will the tiny house village provide affordable housing for longer periods of time and help youth become self-sufficient homeowners in the future, it offers common spaces like the community garden where tenants can bond and experience a sense of community and trust. “There’s a difference between giving someone a house and giving them a house so that it can be a home,” says Desiree Cook, the nonprofit’s founder and executive director.

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