Re: PDX Shelter Forum - Check out Community First! Village in Austin TX

Linda Witt <linda.witt@...>

The City of Amsterdam had tremendous success opening a Wapato-like facility on the outskirts of the city. They found in amazingly effective to provide distance from the easy availability of substances in the core city.


I don’t think Wapato has been written off. I just heard a city council candidate this week discount the argument that “it’s too far”. He said it’s one light rail station from easy connectedness.


Linda Witt


From: <> On Behalf Of Danielle Elowe
Sent: Sunday, July 5, 2020 1:31 PM
Subject: Re: [pdxshelterforum] PDX Shelter Forum - Check out Community First! Village in Austin TX


From what I've read and heard directly from unsheltered folks, the houseless community has not so far responded favorably to the utilization of the Wapato Jail site for reasons that seem obvious. 1) It's a jail, and regardless of facelifts that fact will remain triggering to many 2) More pragmatically, it is super far away from City Center. While they can promise to be self-sufficient in regards to medical and social services, it still smells of something carceral - the message reads We'll ship you way out here until you're ready to rejoin all of us in civilised society.


I'm not discounting it's potential usefulness entirely, but I think a ton more community input is needed, not from the city or from non-profits, but from those directly affected. That's my two cents.


-Danielle Elowe


On Sun, Jul 5, 2020, 12:22 PM Candee Wilson <candee@...> wrote:

If you aren't familiar with Alan Evans and Bybee Lakes Hope Center, this is what he wants to do with the 18+ acres at the former Wapato jail. He envisions building apartments in addition to the center for people to transition to after treatment. He also plans to use the built-in work environment surrounding the center to help find employment opportunities. This is happening right here in Portland, so ,yes, there are visionaries in our midst. And instead of just serving 200 people, it will serve over 500 eventually. We have a model to follow right here.

Candee Wilson
411 NW Flanders St. #406
Portland, OR  97209

On 7/4/2020 6:49 PM, Portland Shelter Forum wrote:

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Leo Kaminski <leok2@...>
Date: Sat, Jul 4, 2020 at 5:46 PM
Subject: Re: PDX Shelter Forum - Check out Community First! Village in Austin TX
To: PDX Shelter Forum <pdxshelterforum@...>


Hello PDX Shelter Forum,

I encourage all to learn what has been done to address homelessness in other cities.  One of the best examples is Community First! Village.

Community First! Village in Austin, Texas:

This community is founded and run by Mobile Loaves and Fishes:

Community First! Village - YouTube video (one of many):

We need action now!  But locally, we should build on the efforts that have already been made by others here in Portland.  A lot of effort has already gone into identifying sites for villages.

Village Coalition is one group that has already done a lot of talking with the city and other agencies:

Leo Kaminski

On 7/3/2020 3:29 PM, Tim McCormick wrote:

last Thursday we convened an online event, Portland Forum on Alternative Shelter & Villages, co-hosted by Interfaith Alliance on Poverty and Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods. We had 180+ attendees from a all walks of life, including housed and unhoused, officials and city/county staffers, neighborhood association leaders, planners, architects, and homelessness service providers.

A wide range of ideas of ideas were discussed, from possibilities under emerging City and State codes, to the Metro homeless services measure funding, to mobile and vehicle dwellings. The core question: what can we do to ensure every Portland has a safe, decent place to sleep, NOW?


The materials from event including presentations, video and audio, notes, and background materials, are now available, and we invite you to take a look, and share with us or to the initiative's mailing list your thoughts and suggestions. 

We welcome your ongoing input and feedback, suggestions for projects or future events: You can:

·         post to the mailing list by emailing to (if you're not yet a member, message will be held for moderation, & you can join here). 

·         email the planning team at: pdxshelterforum@....

·         reach us on Twitter at @pdxshelterforum

·         use hashtag #pdxshelterforum when posting anything related or to track other related.

Tim McCormick 

Portland Forum on Alternative Shelters & Villages Planning Team



Tim McCormick

Editor at HousingWiki, Organizer at Village Collaborative

Portland, Oregon 




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