NPR logo Not Exactly A Roof, But An Improvement

Not Exactly A Roof, But An Improvement

EDAR Homeless Shelter from takepart on Vimeo.

It's really hard to open a newspaper and not see a story about tent cities popping up as a result of the recession. (And, as a sidenote, it's really hard to open a newspaper nowadays. Check out this heartbreaking layoff. Sigh.) The indispensable Marketplace (and earlier, the Los Angeles Times) reported on a tent improvement today — in California, where nearly 70,000 people are without homes. It's called EDAR — an acronym for Everybody Deserves A Roof. It's a sort of portable home. Peter Samuelson, a film producer and philanthropist, sponsored the competition that created the EDAR, which is basically a shopping cart that folds out into a cot, complete with a canvas zip-tent for privacy. However, the mobile units aren't cheap; they cost around $500 dollars. And of course, Samuelson stresses that they're not as good as a real home. But — it's a modest, yet temporary solution to a problem that doesn't seem to be getting much better.