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In an effort to “change how you see the homeless,” the NYC Rescue Mission conducted a viral video social experiment, to see if people would even notice members of their own families if they appeared homeless. The idea behind the video is to ask the question, “Have the homeless become so invisible we wouldn’t notice our own family living on the street?” The results are pretty compelling. You can learn more about how NYC Rescue Mission is helping the New York’s homeless community—and how you can support them—at MakeThemVisible.com ... Discuss

 

While homelessness continues to be a major problem in cities around the country, some creative architects and innovative nonprofits are hoping that they have found a solution: micro-houses. Read More

 
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Instead of giving away cheap T-shirts or promotional clothing items at Austin’s convention center during the massive SXSW festival, the tech company Medallia is collecting it from attendees. The Silicon Valley-based customer management company has partnered with Austin’s Foundation for the Homeless to collect the marketing apparel given away by other companies (know as SWAG—“stuff we all get”) to donate to the local homeless community. Michael Scott would approve ... Discuss

 

Artist and former MIT student Michael Rakowitz has figured out a cheap and efficient way to keep members of the urban homeless community warm during the winter. His custom designed “paraSITE” shelters use cheap clear plastic or Ziploc bags (they only require about $5 worth of supplies) to connect to buildings’ HVAC vents, which keep them inflated and heated. Each one (he’s made about 60 over the course of the last 17 years) is individually design for the needs of a homeless community member in a major city. Because New York has strict laws about sleeping bags or tents being under 18 inches (to prevent camping), the paraSITE he made for a man there was in prefect compliance with the strict regulations ... Discuss

 

You may remember the story from earlier this year about a programmer who offered a local homeless man a choice: he would either give him $100, or he would take time out of his schedule to teach him code. Leo, the New York City homeless man, chose the code lessons. Now, armed with his new programming knowledge and a laptop from the programmer, Leo has just released his first app. “Trees for Cars”, which costs $.99, helps drivers find fellow carpoolers on their route and see how much CO2 they are saving by using the app. After just 16 weeks of lessons, Leo (who relies on the generosity of local doormen to charge his laptop), is officially a developer. In a statement about that app, Leo said, "Trees for Cars is a great way to build relationships, strengthen communities, help each-other financially and energy wise, all under the umbrella of saving the environment." Congrats on the all the hard work, Leo ... Discuss