Micro Shelter for the Homeless





Introduction: Micro Shelter for the Homeless

Solar Contest 2016

Third Prize in the
Solar Contest 2016

This is my very first video. Please forgive me for anything I may have excluded in this build video.

So...I decided to build a high end micro shelter for someone in need. I've seen several of these built by very well meaning people. I thought I would just take it a step farther by making this shelter more like a true micro home. In the very near future I will be giving this shelter to a homeless person in need. Winter is just around the corner. I live in upstate NY and winters can get very harsh here. As you will see in the video this shelter is extremely well built. The idea is to have a place where a person can get out of bad weather and keep warm and comfortable.

I will be including with this shelter a low voltage electric heater, MRE's (Meal Ready to Eat), water, sleeping pad and sleeping bag, toiletries and SOLAR POWER. I also added to all four sides of the exterior motion sensing solar powered security lighting. This gives the occupant an added sense of security at night. I believe these are the basics a person needs to get by and survive and perhaps even better their life in some small way. There is a 12v TV and radio in the shelter. The awning windows are double pained. Just because a person is homeless does not mean they should not have some form of entertainment and comfort.

This hole project was built by myself and my daughter. The video captures the build from beginning to end.

Thank You!



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    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.




    Interesting, but have qustions... How will the shelters be deployed and will they and the occupants run up against local ordinances and zoning? State law? How will the 12 VDC be provided? How easy will it be for the owners of the shelters to retain possession?

    The shelter is on wheels and not subject to the same laws as a permanent structure. I am working with the a city here to make sure where it is place will pose no problem. The shelter is as secure as your home with a solid door and a key. Most homeless people will not leave their possessions more than a few feet from themselves so I figure they will keep it close. Besides...I am dooing a lot of leg work on this...but I can only do so much. Once the shelter has it's new owner, I have to let them take responsability for it. What happen after I give it away is beyond my control.

    Thank You

    As someone who has had a lot of experience with homeless people and drug addicts, you are doing them no favors by giving them handouts. While your heart may be in the right place, it is a bit misguided. You are only strengthening their dependence on others and not helping them see that they need to help themselves. As harsh as it may sound, they have to hit rock bottom and get to the point that they want to work for what they need. I can not count the number of homeless people who were only homeless because they could get by on handouts. Try finding someone who is homeless because of mental illness. I know there are a few homeless people that are seriously unable to help themselves. Unfortunately, the vast majority are just junkies that haven't reached rock bottom yet.

    From: A former homeless junkie

    It's all good...I understand where belsey is coming from. Thanks for the support. Sometimes the intent that is written and how someone else reads it can be two very different things. No harm no foul!!!

    Thanks so much, that's a big relief -- I felt terrible when I saw your first reaction to my comment. Clearly I expressed myself very poorly, but I'm glad I was able to convince you I didn't mean to be mean.

    Hey don't feel bad! Your comment was valid!

    Super lovely! Have wanted to try something similar on a sled/ski type base for up here in Alaska. Sort of like a "nicer" dog sled style microshelter. I am very curious about the heater system, and I love that your daughter helped you out! Gonna give this some though :-)

    Feature Worthy work. Could you include steps of build??


    What a fantastic amount of detail in the design, I love the way the door and walls look. Looking forward to what your next Instructables will bring.

    Just wondering: where will your solar panels go? Will they be fixed to the roof or will they be separate units (either stand-alone or temporarily attachable to wall/roof)?