Eden Village making progress to house homeless

Eden Village in Wilmington has been working on building 31 tiny homes for the homeless, and they’re more than halfway there with 17 completed.
Published: Oct. 18, 2022 at 8:08 AM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Eden Village in Wilmington has been working on building 31 tiny homes for the homeless, and they’re more than halfway there with 17 completed.

In Wilmington, there are roughly 150 chronically homeless people on the streets. Soon, those numbers will hopefully go down following new housing options for them.

The Eden Village residents must meet a criteria to live there. They must have been living on the streets of Wilmington for over a year, have a physical or mental disability and must be able to pay $300 a month.

Most of the residents who plan to reside in the new homes will have been on the streets for 5 to 7 years.

The homes come fully furnished, thanks to donations from Home Again Wilmington. The tiny homes are equipped to house one adult.

Kim Dalton, co-founder of Eden Village, stated that she was either going to go to Kenya to lend a helping hand or go home and make a difference in her community. Once she saw the need in Wilmington for safe, affordable housing for those on the streets, she knew what needed to be done.

“This will be life-changing. They will move into this tiny home and it will be totally furnished. They’ll have everything that they need to start their new lives. So they’ll have sheets and cleaning supplies, pots and pans. So, that’s going to be a really interesting time for our residents, where they’ve carried everything that they’ve owned with them and now they’re going to be able to still have their things here. They can come in, make a meal and go to bed in their own bed. So we’re really excited for this transition. And truly, it’s going to be life-changing,” said Dalton.

The village will also have a community center and garden for the residents to enjoy. The community center will serve many functions, such as having an office for medical officials to provide services ranging from therapy to dental work. It will also become a shelter during the cold months for people who are not residents of the village in order for them to have a warm bed, meal and shower.

Kim and her husband Tom are very passionate about this project and cannot wait to hand the keys over to someone who hasn’t had a home for many years.

“A lot of times, the residents will sleep on their front porch. The first couple of weeks, they’ll sleep outside or with their windows open just because they’re not used to being inside. There’s so much trauma and stuff that they’ve been through. So, we really want them to have their own secure space where they can really start healing and feeling like a person again,” said Tom Dalton.

The village currently has 31 residents lined up for move-in, but there is a waitlist for individuals who would still like to apply.

The hope is to open the doors and hand the keys to the new residents by the first of the year.