Vancouver Introduces ‘Pop-Up’ Homeless Shelters In A Brilliant Effort To Help People On The Street

6/30/14 3:43PM EST

Image via Spring Advertising

Image via Spring Advertising

Vancouver is now home to pop-up homeless shelters.

A grassroots nonprofit in the Canadian city, RainCity Housing, has created a solution to help get people off the street, even just for the night.

The organization, whose mission statement is literally to provide a home for everyone, designed an innovative and smart set of pop-up homeless shelters that double as park benches. During the day the installation works just like any other bench, with a back support that allows people to sit and relax. By nighttime a sort of roof extends out, providing a cover for anyone needing a place to sleep that night.

And there’s no mistaking these pop-up homeless shelters from other park benches. Spring Advertising, the Vancouver creative agency behind the design, integrated UV letters to work with sunlight throughout the day so the benches’ multipurpose use is clear to any passerby.

“This is a bench,” the back support of the bench reads during the day on a stark white background. And at night, in bright glow-in-the dark letters: “This is a bedroom.”

Image via Spring Advertising

Image via Spring Advertising

Another design reads, “Find shelter here,” according to The Independent, while another says “Find a home here.” The pop-up shelters also provide addresses to RainCity shelter locations and links to the company’s website for those who need more help.

The innovative idea for this design came after a London management company installed a set of spikes in front of its doors as a solution to the growing number of homeless people finding refuge there overnight. Instead of creating a solution to essentially shoo away the problem, RainCity Housing chose a more productive path to help resolve the issue. The park seemed like the perfect place to start.

We don’t know if they have been used by homeless folks, but probably,” Bill Briscall, Communications Manager at RainCity told The Telegraph. “In a park one block from my house I see people sleeping overnight almost every month throughout the year.”

Image via Spring Advertising

Image via Spring Advertising

RainCity Housing provides numerous ways to accommodate housing and support for the homeless. Find ways to support its cause on its website.


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