St. Johns Christian Church has voted to begin the process of constructing transitional housing for people experiencing homelessness. The project is currently in its early stages.

Below is an overview of why we have made these plans, and why a Village will benefit our city. Thanks to our friends at St. Johns Welcomes the Village for writing it up. (Visit their website and sign the letter of support!)

Also check out the following links for more information on the project:

Overview of the Project: A Home for Everyone – St. Johns Village

KGW Interview with Pastor David

FAQ’s – April 23, 2019

Responses to Neighborhood Questions – April 23, 2019

KGW Article about the Project

OregonLive Article about the Project

What is a Village as a housing model?

Government-supported Villages offer a mid-term, transitional form of housing where residents live temporarily to find stability while pursuing opportunities for permanent housing.

Villages have up to 20 individual tiny homes offering a locking door and enough space for a bed and storage. The village will be connected to local utilities (water, sewer, electricity), and include common spaces, shared bathrooms and showers, a kitchen, security fencing, landscaping, and garbage service.

Where will a Village be located in St. Johns?

The Joint Office of Homeless Services is working to locate a secure, professionally designed Village on land leased from St. Johns Christian Church on N. Richmond. This location in St. Johns is centralized and closer to more transit options, food, health services, community support, the library, etc. than a previously discussed alternative location on N. Roberts Avenue.

Who will live in the Village?

As a transitional sheltering service, this village will operate via reservations only, serving single adults and couples, with only one person per pod. There will be no children (under 18) and no walk-up services.

Some residents from a nearby established village, Hazelnut Grove, may choose to be among the initial residents. Priority for the additional residencies will be offered to those experiencing homelessness in St. Johns. As people transition into permanent housing, St. Johns residents will have first priority for vacancies.

Hazelnut Grove is a thriving, self-organized community of roughly 15 folks who have formerly been without shelter. Of the 15 residents, 11 are employed and 4 are retired/on fixed income and have either been priced out of housing or have not found available affordable housing.

Hazelnut Grove formed in 2014 on an undevelopable, state-owned right-of-way where two busy roads intersect, and they cannot stay permanently in that location.

All village residents will sign a program agreement that specifies their responsibilities to each other and neighbors including strict rules around smoking areas, drinking alcohol, and use of illegal drugs. (Alcohol and illegal drugs will be prohibited on or within 100 feet of the premises at all times)

All village residents will enter into the countywide Homeless Management Information System.

All village residents will actively work towards a transition into permanent housing.

How will the Village be managed?

The Joint Office of Homeless Services (JOHS) will hold the lease with the St. Johns Christian Church and will contract with Do Good Multnomah as a service provider.

JOHS, which is overseen by the Mayor and County Chair, will retain ultimate oversight over, and responsibility for, the success of the Village.

Do Good Multnomah will serve as property manager and service provider, providing on-site management 7 days per week (daytime hours) with a 24 hour contact line for emergencies. They will screen new residents, manage the village, provide on-site social services, housing support, and ensure village safety.

St. Johns Christian Church will remain as the land owner/landlord and Village neighbor, but will have no management authority or formal responsibilities with the Village.

What is the estimated timeline for this Village?

The current estimate (as of November 2019) for the Village to open is late 2020.