Hawaii Church provides affordable 'igloos' for homeless people

(Reuters/Shannon Stapleton)Kalaniopua Young, 32, originally from Hawaii, poses outside her tent at SHARE/WHEEL Tent City 3 near Seattle on October 12, 2015.

A Church in Hawaii is battling homelessness by deploying Alaskan home domes that look like igloos and are easy to transport and assemble.

The First Assembly of God in Honolulu has so far finished setting up 12 home domes made by Alaska-based firm InterShelter. These igloo-like, fiber glass homes provide a quick temporary solution for homeless people in Hawaii, Inhabitat details.

In 2015, Hawaii Gov. David Ige declared a state of emergency because of the state's highest rate of homelessness in the country. In the last two years, the growing homelessness issue has caused tent cities to overflow, and sidewalks to be filled with unsightly temporary shelters, The Christian Science Monitor reports.

The First Assembly of God decided to do something to help fight the problem. The Church raised US$100,000 from the Christian community and bought the home domes, each of which bears a price tag of US$9,500, and has an additional US$800 for shipping.

Each InterShelter home dome can accommodate up to four individuals. The portable igloo is 20 ft. wide and has a total of 314 square ft. of space. InterShelter CEO Don Kubley explained that the dome can be assembled by stacking the 21 fiberglass panels together in such a way that they overlap each other.

"It takes three things to survive: food, water, and shelter, and we are one-third of that formula," said Kubley.

For First Assembly of God's senior pastor Klayton Ko, Hawaii's homeless situation has already reached crisis level. However, he added that the home domes are only part of the initial step toward a permanent solution to the problem. The Church aims to establish corporate sponsorships to raise funds for the igloos until Hawaii can come up with a more permanent answer to homelessness.

In the Sand Island of Hawaii, a homeless community called "Hale Mauliola" has made available single-unit containers to be used as shelters, the AP reports. Each unit costs US$7,717 and the residents are provided with three meals per day and shared bathroom facilities.