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Tiny Home Summit to address youth homelessness in Chicago; experts join from across country
2016-02-09

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CHICAGO — Pride Action Tank and Polk Bros. Foundation will host a Tiny Home Summit April 18-19, 2016 to bring together experts from across the country to address the issue of youth homelessness and new solutions to house this vulnerable population in Chicago.

The Chicago Tiny Home Summit will be at University of Illinois at Chicago Monday, April 18, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Tuesday, April 19, 9 a.m.-noon.

The tiny home movement has already been part of housing solutions in a dozen U.S. cities. The two-day summit will bring together experts to discuss utilizing lower-cost, quicker solutions to meet the demand for homes for the unstably housed in Chicago, especially focused on the youth homeless population, estimated to be more than 20,000 in the city of Chicago.

The tiny homes movement can also offer creative solutions for dignified housing that comes with services and resources for those seeking a path to independent living.

"There are many types of solutions needed to address the complex issue of homelessness in Chicago," said Debbie Reznick, Senior Program Officer with Polk Bros. Foundation. "We can learn from the experiences of experts in other cities, and then create innovative solutions that make sense here."

The Pride Action Tank, a project of the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, and the Windy City Times, along with lead sponsor Polk Bros. Foundation, joined by UIC's Gender and Sexuality Center and Alphawood Foundation, are summit hosts. Topics will include financing, housing as HIV prevention and public policy issues.

Experts from around the country—including from Seattle, Dallas, Austin and Memphis—will share their experiences creating tiny home communities. During the summit, a model of the winning design of the Tiny Homes Competition—hosted by the American Institute of Architects—Chicago, Pride Action Tank, Alphawood Foundation, Landon Bone Baker Architects, and Windy City Times—will be on display.

"I am extremely excited to bring together a wide range of people to explore the tiny home movement in Chicago," said Summit Chair Tracy Baim, publisher of Windy City Times and founder of Pride Action Tank. "This is not a one-size-fits-all solution to homelessness, but it can work for certain populations, and also open up myriad opportunities to bring tiny homes to many segments of the Chicago population, including those who want to downsize and live more cheaply."

Early bird registration is $45. After March 15, registration is $65. Breakfast and lunch will be provided on the 18th, breakfast only on the 19th. Register here: chicagotinyhomes.com/ .


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