In the era of smartphones and a 24/7 news cycle, it takes extreme measures to get people’s attention — which Reverend Jeff Obafemi Carr knows first hand. When he set out to raise money to build amicro community in Nashville, Tennessee, in hopes to provide shelter for a few of the estimated 2,300 homeless people in the city, he knew he first needed a hook.
So with the help of his founding partner and carpenter Dwayne A. Jones, he built a model of what one of their micro homes would look like and vowed to live in it until they raised the $50,000 on theirGoFundMe campaign they needed to build their village. After 45 days, 650 donors, and a lot of restless nights for Carr, they finally reached their funding goal.
“I felt good staying here, and safe staying here and protected staying here,” Carr said about the tiny home he occupied for more than a month — a place that will now serve as shelter for a member of the homeless community.
With the money in hand — and the help of an 11-man construction crew — the first micro village (featuring six stand-alone homes) in the city has been completed. Each house is 60-square feet and features a single door and window. Inside is a murphy bed, mini fridge, and heating and air conditioning.
There’s still space in the village for 19 more homes, which Carr plans to fill up over time. He also toldUSA Today he hopes this project has a bigger impact on the community as a whole: “We carry the idea that people can see beyond our preserved differences and come together around our commonalities.”