City Council approves $1.2 million for Avivo Village

October 20, 2022

The City Council has approved $1.2 million in funding for Avivo Village, an innovative indoor community of tiny houses in the North Loop for people experiencing homelessness.

The City Council approved the funding for Avivo as part of a larger City and County joint strategy responding to homelessness. The City has previously provided grants for Avivo Village operations in 2020 and 2021. This award, coupled with previous awards in 2020 and 2021, will bring the City’s total commitment to approximately $5 million. Avivo Village’s indoor community has 100 secure, private dwellings and wraparound services for people experiencing unsheltered homelessness.

The City and Hennepin County, together with state, nonprofit and philanthropic partners, have fundamentally reshaped the homelessness response system since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. Together, the City and County have invested more than $200 million in the homelessness response system to:

  • improve the conditions of shelters and ensure they could be open 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
  • support two new, culturally specific and low-barrier shelters – Avivo Village and Homeward Bound.
  • support the creation of a new women’s shelter and a new medical respite shelter at the Endeavors Residence opened in 2022.
  • increase City funding for street outreach teams and a new City Homeless Response Coordination team.
  • add significant staffing to create the Hennepin County Streets to Housing Team, which is responsible for working with residents staying in unsheltered situations to help them transition to housing as quickly as possible.

Hennepin County and the City of Minneapolis jointly work together to administer the homelessness response system in Hennepin County. The County leads in setting strategy and providing services while the City supports the effort by working to build permanent supportive housing, supporting shelter capital improvements and directing federal funds that it receives for responding to homelessness in consultation with Hennepin County and community partners.

“The Avivo Village model is working,” said Mayor Jacob Frey. “When people get the dignity of their own space, they can better take the next step toward permanent housing. Combining that with Avivo’s built-in, wraparound services, you get real solutions that we should all get behind.”

“When the idea of a tiny home village was first proposed, not many people believed it was something that would work, I’m proud I was a believer and impressed by the work of the Avivo team to not only create a new system but actually find permanent housing for over 100 people,” said City Council Member Lisa Goodman. “Sometimes we just need to do things differently.”

“Avivo Village was not only an innovative approach to the housing continuum, but it’s one that proceeds to reap huge rewards for our community,” said City Council Member Jeremiah Ellison. “I’m proud that we are supporting Avivo Village and growing this model as a standard for addressing homelessness in our city.

“We are elated with this continued partnership and investment in our joint belief that no one in Minneapolis should be sleeping outdoors and in places not meant for living,” said Emily Bastian, Avivo’s vice president of ending homelessness. “This funding empowers us all to do better on behalf of individuals living unsheltered. And that is what Avivo Village is about, radically welcoming individuals into a safe place that respects their dignity and helps them secure permanent housing and take their next best steps.”