Happy Headline: NY Youth Build Homeless Shelters
A group of Bronx youth, some as young as grade school, are making a difference in the life of a member of New York’s homeless population.
How? By constructing a tiny house for a Bronx vagrant who they have befriended.
According to the New York Post, the kids spend their weekends building the 4-by-8-foot shelter with rented power tools, two-by-fours and steel braces. They’re also installing flooring, a door and windows.
Their hope is that their friend in need, 48-year-old Anthony Johnson, who currently lives under a bridge near the Sheridan Expressway can stay their permanently.
“Hopefully, it will give him some motivation to make his life better,” Carlos Ayala, 34, said. Ayala, a father of four, founded the crew, named the Charged Up Riders in September.
In an effort to steer clear of the crime present in most of the area, the group bikes together to pick up needed supplies to help their less fortunate neighbors. The Bronx hut will sit on city land under a bridge near a public park, which means the city could knock it down.
The Riders range from ages 6 to 20 years old. The group has around 150 members.
Because of this, the group is keeping its location a secret for now and they’re hoping the city will turn a blind eye so their friend can have shelter.
“I want my kids to see what people go through,” said Ayala. “Every time we go to the park [to ride bikes], there are a lot of homeless people there. We want to give them a helping hand.”