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Sand Island homeless village set to open - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

Sand Island homeless village set to open

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Welcome to Hale Mau-liola.

Ten trailers are set welcome the first half a dozen residents tomorrow -- including a chihuahua.

And another six people --all with their pets in tow -- will move in Monday.

The converted shipping containers look inviting.

It's a far cry from what was envisioned more than a year ago.

For a 100 dollars month--you get three meals a day, shuttle service at least three times a day and a special area for pets.

And there are few rules here compared to other facilities.

No contraband, gambling or violence allowed.

And there are designated areas for smoking and pets.

But there is NO CURFEW and guests are allowed.

"There's four showers and restroom facilities, toilets, showers and sinks. Everyone can use it at anytime," said Kimo Carvalho, Community Relations Director for the Institute for Human Services.

There are no laundry facilities, though a shuttle will stop at a laundromat and there are plans for a clothesline.

 There is a limit of about two months that you can stay here while you get into more permanent housing.

 IHS has been screening applicants who are motivated to get off the streets and into a better life.

"I think it's really important that we understand that the city and state are trying to establish housing so in the meantime what we are doing is trying to leverage what we can to get people into existing housing," said IHS director Connie Mitchell.

But don't call this an emergency shelter, or even transitional housing.

Providers want to brand this as a "navigational center"-- something in between.

"People need this. Let's do everything we can to make this model that IHS has coming to fruition work, because if it works we can replicate it in other places,”said Gary Nakata, City Director of Community Services.

The village is open to singles and couples and is wheelchair accessible.

The facility is to open in phases with 24 hour security and staff on duty with wrap around social services.

The $100 monthly fee can also be waived in lieu of community services.

It’s a shelter with flexibility --a work in progress-- with the full build out by the end of the year and a grand opening in January.

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