Peter Samuelson believes everyone deserves a roof. He felt so strongly about his argument that he made it the name of his nonprofit: Everyone Deserves A Roof. The organization provides a unique mobile shelter for the homeless, reports Entrepreneur.
Housing L.A.’s homeless population, which numbered nearly 60,000 at the height of 2008’s economic downturn, would cost a staggering $3 billion–an impossible sum to raise. Instead, Samuelson decided to explore a nontraditional way of helping. He approached students at a local art school, as well as a shopping cart fabricator, to help him design and produce a mobile unit that could provide shelter and dignity–at a cost of no more than $500 per unit.
The result: a four-wheeled unit that resembles a collapsible grocery cart, covered by an adaptable, weather-resistant tarp. When folded up, the EDAR can transport people’s belongings; when opened, it becomes a covered cot that provides some privacy and protection from the elements. A brake-and-locking mechanism keeps the unit from drifting.
“The EDAR doesn’t claim to be a permanent fix for homelessness–far from it,” Samuelson says. “But it’s something we can do now to help.”
Photo from EDAR