Seeking Shelter: A Tiny Home Solution

Seeking Shelter is a documentary short about the Housing First Village Project, the result of a partnership among the Human Resource Development Council, Reverend Connie Campbell-Pearson, and the Schools of Architecture and Film & Photography at Montana State University in Bozeman, MT.

The HFV Project will provide transformative housing to Bozeman’s chronically homeless. Targeted towards the homeless population that is most at risk, HFV is a safe and sustainable model designed to support successful reintegration into community living and permanent housing. The single-user “tiny” homes will provide a cost-effective way to address the growing issue of homelessness while maintaining the autonomy and dignity of the resident. Utilizing best practices from around the nation, the HFV project is based on the “Housing First” philosophy, which foregrounds access to housing rather than sobriety, employment, etc.

In May 2017, architecture graduate students and community volunteers began the construction of a prototype tiny house under the supervision of MSU architecture Professors Ralph Johnson and Bill Clinton. Every step in the building process was documented by film MFA students Jessica Portuondo and Evangeline Koonce with the guidance and supervision of MSU film Professor Lucia Ricciardelli. The resulting documentary features the story of this prototype tiny home as well as personal interviews with Bozeman residents who have experienced homelessness in our community.