SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — Once kids in the foster care system turn 18, finding their next home can be a challenge, but a local organization is hoping to make that transition a little less stressful.

In the summer of 2021, staff at the Crittenton Center began planning to build tiny homes for kids.

Kim Scorza with the Crittenton Center said the idea to help kids who just turned 18 came about when one of the children in the center’s emergency shelter reached out for help.

“There was not a plan for where he was going to go, outside of being referred to the street, which is the Gospel Mission, and that is not a plan,” Scorza said. “That is not a plan for a child in foster care.”

The Crittenton Center plans to build six tiny homes near their former emergency shelter. The tiny homes will each be roughly 600 square feet. Scorza said while the kids will live in the homes independently, help will never be far away.

“We have social workers, we have case workers, nurses, we’ll have people around them to support them. Not do it for them, but support them,” she said.

Katie Bruno with the Crittenton Center said while the project will cost $1.2 million, many community members have volunteered to donate supplies.

“It means a lot,” Bruno said. “I think just in the last year or so, it’s really opened my eyes to how much people want to help and assist kids who are in these situations.” 

The kids will be responsible for paying rent. The Crittenton Center hopes the kids will be able to move into the homes by winter of 2024.