A Los Angeles man built a tiny house for a homeless woman who'd previously been sleeping in the dirt down the street from his apartment. Almost every day, 60-year-old Smokie visited Elvis Summers' apartment to ask if he had any recyclables. The pair soon developed a friendship, and when Summers discovered Smokie's sleeping situation he knew he had to help.
Summers said he became inspired one day after reading an article about a man in Oakland, California, who built tiny houses out of scrap material. The article prompted him to spend some money of his own to build a home for Smokie so she would no longer have to sleep in the dirt. Five days later, Summers presented the home to his friend.
Summers, an entrepreneur who sells EDM apparel online, said it cost him a total of $500 to build Smokie's home. Considering the low cost of the build and the positive response he received, Summers soon realized he could help other homeless individuals as well.
"I've met so many homeless people, good people," he said. "Since I built Smokie's, I've had several people ask me to make them a tiny home and it's turned into much more than just the one house I wanted to build." He subsequently launched My Tiny House Project LA (Mythpla), raising money via GoFundMe and getting materials donated by local businesses.
"I'd like to offer purpose to these people in need and hire them to build the houses with me. I've even set an appointment with LA's Mayor Eric Garcetti to try and get his help," Summers said. "The city owns or controls many properties which are just sitting collecting dust and could be used, even temporarily, to help save lives.