Volunteers build a tiny house at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church in Kirkland. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

Volunteers build a tiny house at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church in Kirkland. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

Kirkland church groups build tiny houses for the homeless

The homes will be donated to villages in Seattle.

Using volunteer manpower and donated materials, Kirkland church groups came together this summer to build tiny houses that will be sent to villages in Seattle.

Cal Pygott, a congregation member at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church and former high school shop teacher, said that he was tapped to lead the project at his church because of his construction skills. He also believes in the benefits of providing a more permanent residence for people in need.

“The walls we’re building here are for inclusion, and not to keep anybody out,” he said. “It’s a different border from what someone else might want to build. We’re trying to help the community, not divide it.”

His 8 foot by 12 foot structure is the second tiny house constructed at Holy Spirit. Last year the church’s youth ministry led the project and built the project using a kit from Home Depot. This summer Pygott wanted to get different groups involved, and decided to use raw materials. He also reused some from last year and received some donated items, including paint.

“There was a lot of enthusiasm from the congregation to do another one,” Pygott said, noting that the church also made an effort to contact other groups in the area to gauge their interest in building tiny homes.

Groups from Wooden Cross in Woodinville and Holy Family Parish volunteered to help with construction, and may build their own next year. Alumni from California Lutheran University also stopped by to help, Pygott said.

It was usually a different group each day, and the construction process lasted for about a month, having to be put on hold temporarily due to the poor air quality in mid-August. Pygott estimates that 50-100 people volunteered their time, working from 9 a.m. to noon, Monday through Saturday.

“There was a lot of teaching and learning. Most of the volunteers knew very little, if anything, about construction,” he said.

But the goal was to get people involved, Pygott said.

“Most people can write a check to charity, but if you’re working at a soup kitchen, or at a shelter, or building something, you have more ownership of what you’re doing,” he said.

Pygott said that though the home is being sent to a tiny house village in Seattle, homelessness is a problem on the Eastside as well, and “the need is everywhere.”

There are many benefits to tiny houses, one being that they provide dignity. The ability for people to stand up straight in their home is a big self-esteem boost, he said, but there are practical benefits as well.

“The nice thing about the tiny house, versus a tent, is that it gives them more security,” Pygott said. “It’s also insulated all the way around, so it’s warmer and more weather-proof.”

Northlake Unitarian Universalist Church also built a tiny house this summer, and hosted a dedication on Aug. 19.

Social Justice Ministry Team Chair Judith Shattuck wrote in an email to the Reporter that the project demonstrated a longstanding commitment from the church to help its less fortunate neighbors, and a “reflection of our values and hope for making a difference.”

“The tiny house, ‘the house that love built,’ will be transported to a tiny house village in Seattle where a formerly homeless individual will be housed and on the way to a more stable and productive life,” she wrote. “The metrics surrounding the transition from street to housed are truly amazing.”

See www.hslckirkland.org and www.northlakeuu.org for more.

The tiny home building process took about a month and involved 50-100 volunteers. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

The tiny home building process took about a month and involved 50-100 volunteers. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

Cal Pygott (in back) smiles with some volunteers who helped him build a tiny home to house a homeless person. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

Cal Pygott (in back) smiles with some volunteers who helped him build a tiny home to house a homeless person. Photo courtesy of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church

The tiny house built at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church will be donated to a village in Seattle. Katie Metzger/staff photo

The tiny house built at Holy Spirit Lutheran Church will be donated to a village in Seattle. Katie Metzger/staff photo

More in News

President’s emergency declaration sparks immediate legal backlash

Attorney General Bob Ferguson said his team will sue the White House if federal funds originally intended for Washington state are interrupted.

Bill targets sexual health curriculum in Washington schools

Senate Bill 5395 is co-sponsored by 17 Democratic representatives and introduced by Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Federal Way.

According to King County’s Mental Illness and Drug Dependency (MIDD) annual report, Seattle had the highest rate of people using services at 36 percent of the total, followed by 31 percent from South King County, 18 percent from the greater Eastside, and 7 percent from north county including Shoreline.
Study shows King County’s treatment funding is making progress

A document on the county’s .1 percent health sales tax was accepted Wednesday by the county council.

Children’s play area at Seadrunar. Photo by Lauren Davis via Facebook
Seedy side of Seadrunar: Drug rehab center accused of neglect, exploitation

Public records reveal that Seattle facility was accused of neglecting children and clients in its care.

Southbound traffic backs up as northbound drivers cruise on with ease on the Highway 99 viaduct on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
WSDOT hopes ‘Viadoom’ habits continue

The department credits commuters with adapting to the closure and mitigating impacts.

New Friends of Youth CEO, Paul Lwali, will replace Terry Pottmeyer. Courtesy photo.
Friends of Youth hires new CEO

Pottmeyer steps down; Lwali becomes new Friends of Youth CEO.

Russell Wilson and Ciara spoke Friday at the Tukwila Library to Foster students and other attendees as their Why Not You Foundation joined forces with the King County Library System and JPMorgan Chase to launch the DREAM BIG: Anything is Possible campaign. Photo by Kayse Angel
Russell Wilson and Ciara launch DREAM BIG campaign

Partnership with King County libraries dovetails with scholarship program for local students.

Somali community faces SeaTac displacement

Proposed redevelopment threatens the heart of the Somali business community.

One of the ‘snowiest’ months on record

Citizens fled to stores to stock up on needed supplies; City staff worked to keep roads clear.

Most Read