Eden Village of Tulsa Aims to Help the Homeless

Scalding Heat on the Streets Kills the Most Vulnerable

By: Chris Putman | Category: Special Interest | Issue: September 2023

Everyone knows not to leave a pet in a locked car with the windows up on a warm day.  Temperatures can rise to high enough levels that it can kill your beloved canine or feline.  Just recently pet owners are becoming aware of the sidewalk and asphalt temperatures when taking their furry friends for a walk. If the air temperature is over 100 degrees, the blacktop can reach temperatures of a scalding 160 degrees, according to August 20, 2020 Spectrum News weather article by Meteorologist Mary Wasson, “Too Hot to Trot With Man's Best Friend.”
Beyond that, there is another segment of the population that is equally affected by the extreme temperatures on the streets and sidewalks, the homeless. Here are some not-so-fun facts provided on PBS’s website, the June 20, 2022 article by Phoenix AP titled “Extreme Heat Can Be Deadly for People Who Are Homeless.”

  • 70,000 people died across Europe in 2003 from the heat.
  • Excessive heat causes more weather-related deaths in the United States than hurricanes, flooding and tornadoes combined, some 1,500 each year.
  • 130 homeless people were among the 339 individuals who died from 2021's summertime heat. Homeless people are about 200 times more likely than sheltered individuals to die from heat-associated causes.
  • A 62-year-old homeless woman was severely burned and died when she collapsed on a sizzling Phoenix blacktop road.
  • Another 62-year-old mentally ill woman died in a hot alley in Salt Lake City. Her sister suggested if homeless people could get permanent housing, it would help protect them from heat-related deaths. 
Eden Village Of Tulsa

One Tulsa man is sensitive to this issue and is doing his part to meet that need. Co-founder and President of Eden Village of Tulsa Brad Johnson has a heart for the homeless, so much so that he’s dedicated his retirement years to fight for the cause, ensuring that no one sleeps outside.  Tulsa has about 3,600 homeless individuals.  He wants to be a part of the solution.  His brainchild, Eden Village of Tulsa, is a 17-acre gated community, with 63 tiny homes, a community center, greenhouse and farm designed to provide permanent homes for the displaced and those in need. “Eden Village does not simply want to provide adequate housing for the chronically-disabled homeless,” Johnson said.  “We want to create and nurture a sense of community.”

Matching Grants Available

City government programs have been formed to address the homeless problem like the $500 million Tulsa Housing Challenge and created efforts to end the dilemma; unfortunately, the plight has worsened.  Patterning after the tested and successful Eden Village models across the nation, Johnson is on the path to raise $5.9 million to build the community.  Donors who are moved to give before December of this year will have their gift matched dollar for dollar through the generous Helmerich Trust.  Organizations can sponsor an entire home and volunteers can be of help to the residents of the village.  During this extreme weather, Johnson yearns to get this vulnerable population off the streets and into their own home.

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Eden Village of Tulsa

For more information, contact:

Eden Village of Tulsa

(918) 549-5169
Tulsa, OK

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