Photo above: Lane County students work on shelters through the Constructing a Brighter Future program.

Collaborative project in Lane County brings together schools, housing organizations, community-based organizations and the local workforce to build shelters for the unhoused

Eugene, OR – 6 December 2022 – Constructing a Brighter Future, a collaborative project involving Lane Education Service District (ESD), Lane Community College, Lane Workforce Partnership and others, is bringing the community together to shelter the unhoused. Led by construction experts and educators, area students are building temporary shelters for individuals experiencing houselessness. The shelters are then connected with those in need through a partnership with community-based organizations that provide transitional housing. 

Shareen Vogel from Lane County ESD said, “The work we are doing at Constructing a Brighter Future not only supports a prioritized community need, but is also a workforce initiative that introduces young people to high demand construction trades through hands-on, work-based learning opportunities. Together we are building a system of support to move forward into housing sustainability.”

To create the project’s single-room transitional shelters, Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers from 15 Lane County School Districts and Lane Community College worked with builders and designers from community-based organizations that address houselessness, including Square One Village and EveryOne Village. The CTE instructors then brought the plans into their classrooms and are leading students in the construction process. 

With a goal of building 30 shelters from August of 2022 through June of 2023, Constructing a Brighter Future is currently seeking additional support. In addition to funding from Oregon Department of Education CTE Revitalization grant, Lane County Economic Development, Future Ready Oregon Prosperity 10K grant, The Roundhouse Foundation in Sisters, Oregon has provided the group with a $25,000 matching grant to help boost the impact of future community donations. 

Erin Borla, executive director and trustee at The Roundhouse Foundation said, “Constructing a Brighter Future is a perfect example of bringing together multiple groups in one community to address a very acute need, including educators and students. It creates a foundation of learning for students in the region’s rural communities to help those in need, while simultaneously gaining valuable, trade-based skills for multiple career pathways. Supporting and elevating projects like this is a core part of our mission at The Roundhouse Foundation.”

About the Constructing A Brighter Future Project

Constructing a Brighter Future Project was developed by Lane Education Service District, Lane Community College, and Lane Workforce Partnership to address houselessness in the community and introduce young people to multiple career pathways. The project draws from a network of Lane County educators, local transitional housing organizations, community-based organizations, as well as industry and workforce personnel to develop shelters. 

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Published On: December 13th, 2022 / Categories: Featured Grant Stories, Grant News /