After a summer of searching, the Steve Cardiff House still doesn’t have a new home.
Staff at Whitehorse’s Blood Ties Four Directions have been looking for somewhere for their tiny house ever since they were given an August deadline to get off the land loaned to them for the last four years.
The house has been unplugged from water and sewer and is being moved into storage the same way you might store an RV, said Blood Ties executive director Patricia Bacon.
“It’s really sad and difficult right now to be taking our little house and moving it into a storage facility where we can’t use it for an unknown length of time.”
If a new location isn’t found before the ground freezes, the tiny house will have to stay in storage until things warm up in the spring.
“I’d like to be hopeful that in the long run we will find something and that this program is only temporarily being shut down and not permanently shut down,” Bacon said.
“That’s what I’m hoping for in terms of long-term outcomes, but it’s a bummer for sure.”
The 240-square-foot Steve Cardiff House is meant to provide a home for someone who might be hard to house otherwise. The idea is that with the safety of a roof over their head — and support from Blood Ties staff — the tenant is more likely to be able to make positive changes in their life.
Since it opened, five people have stayed in the house for up to a year.
The tenant could be someone struggling with homelessness, coming out of a treatment program, or coming out of jail, for example.
No one has been made homeless by the house shutting down. The person who was living there this summer has found a new place to live, Bacon said.
When news of the pending move of the house was made public, the organization got a couple of leads on possible new locations but nothing panned out, Bacon said.
She’s still optimistic that a solution will be found eventually.
A new home for the Steve Cardiff House should be close to city bus routes so the person who lives there has access to work or public services.
The house needs about 600 square feet of space and to tie into the city’s water and sewer.
“It’s not an easy ask and we recognize that. It’s a big decision for somebody to say, ‘Okay, I would like to have the Steve Cardiff house on my property or in my backyard,’” she said.
“It is a big ask. Sometimes with these things people need a little more time to really think about it and really think about how they might be able to help.”
Anyone who might be able to help can contact Blood Ties for more information.
Contact Ashley Joannou at firstname.lastname@example.org