Mobile Hygiene Infrastructure Program (MHIP)
We are adjusting this program to help serve the community during the COVID-19 crisis by creating a Coronavirus Response stations where we would set up the shower trailer and other equipment on a central site with other homeless services partners providing Covid-19 screening and testing. We may arrange to have van transport from the locations of homeless guests to this site on a scheduled basis, and volunteers would be trained and equipped to work with guests who may have been exposed to the virus.
Our Shower Trailer Program been created by Build a Bus Home (BABH) to provide a way for municipalities in Thurston County to meet part of the basic hygiene needs and reduce the health and environmental impacts of some of the most at-risk homeless residents. The basic health and safety needs of homeless residents is a challenge when many go without basic hygiene services, such as showers and handwashing and this leads to other consequences for general safety and health in our communities
The shower trailer includes eight sinks and mirrors for personal hygiene.
The first demonstration of this program took place at Westminster Presbyterian Church in December 2019.
The Build A Bus Home (BABH) volunteer team stages equipment Dec. 22, 2019, as they prepare for the inaugural event to open shower and clean-up facilities in a converted trailer to the community. (Photo by Shända L. De Anda)
This program is also versatile in that it can be scheduled to provide services for new priority locations as they are identified. We can visit homeless sites, city sites, and Churches, provide services for a few hours and then move on.
We provide staffing through volunteers and operate with lower equipment and material costs through donations and in-kind contributions from local government and businesses.
In the second phase, we introduce Mobile Village of Care, where this initial equipment will be supplemented by a bus conversion into laundry, compositing toilets, a charging station. storage for supplies, and lockers. Our second bus will include computers for guests to use, comfortable, fluffy, colorful furniture where we can connect human to human. The Mobile Village of Care brings together hygiene with our local service providers offering a one stop shop type of atmosphere for our homeless neighbors.
In this phase program staff will liaise closely with the Thurston County Health and Services Department, health care workers, addiction and housing advocates and case managers. They will promote a collaborative model for rehabilitation and housing stability. We will follow all up to date Covid-19 protocols.