Occupy Madison is taking applications for new residents

Occupy Madison is currently taking applications for currently homeless individuals to join our two villages!

Occupy Madison is taking applications for the fall.  We currently have 8 – 10 openings at our properties located at 1901 Aberg Ave. and are hopeful that we may be able to obtain another property within the next year.  We are inviting people who are experiencing primarily unsheltered homelessness to apply to be a member and start earning sweat equity towards living in one of our current villages or a potential 3rd village.

About Occupy Madison

Living in our villages is a commitment!  Community living is not for everyone, it requires agreeing to our community agreement, participating in weekly meetings and contributing to the village you live in by doing chores and tasks.  Occupy Madison is a 100% volunteer run organization where the people who live in our villages run the villages, are board and committee members doing all functions of the organization.

Living at Occupy Madison has always been free to the people living there.  However, people have to become members, become active members by earning “sweat equity” towards their homes and remain active participants in the governance and decision making in the organization.  Membership is obtained by attending orientation, attending two General Membership Meetings and being voted in by the current membership.  Sweat equity is earned by participating in meetings, helping build items we sell in our store, participating in work days and helping us get our coffee cart up and running.  Our goal is for residents to earn enough money through village sales and fundraising to create sustainable villages.

Since 2014 Occupy Madison has housed 42 individuals.  We are happy to report that while we consider this a permanent housing option for folks, we have also had 11 people who have stayed with us get into housing.  4 people have gotten into treatment or are in the criminal justice system.  While we have asked some people to leave, to the best of our knowledge only 2 people are currently experiencing homelessness. And sadly, two of our community members have passed away.

Current waiting list folks need to re-apply so we know they are still interested, but will be prioritized.

Currently, we have about 180 people on our waiting list!  However since October 2020 when we started the waiting list, we know that some people have gotten into housing, some people have moved out of town and sadly some people have passed away.  Additionally, we are experiencing difficulties reaching the people on the waiting list due to phone numbers that have changed and emails that are no longer read.  In order to ensure we are reaching those who currently want to live in a tiny home in our cooperative villages, we are inviting people currently experiencing homelessness to re-apply for current openings at both 1901 Aberg and 304 N 3rd St.  People who have expressed interest in the past will be prioritized in the order that they were on our original waiting list.

How do I apply?

Our preferred way is to indicate interest by filling out this google form.  We understand not everyone has access to a computer or phone that can fill out the form, so you can also call or text 608-305-4707 and leave your name, best way to contact you (phone or email preferred but other ways accepted and you may use the phone or email of someone who can get a message to you quickly), your current living situation (street/tent, vehicle, shelter, staying with friends or family, expecting to be homeless soon, etc) and if you have previously expressed interest by emailing or leaving a voicemail.

304 N 3rd St Occupy Village



1901 Aberg Occupy Village



If you are interested in the 3202 Dairy Drive City run campground run by MACH OneHealth/Kabba Recovery Services, speak to an outreach worker, Beacon or shelter staff to take the VISPDAT as they use Coordinated Entry to accept residents.

One thought on “Occupy Madison is taking applications for new residents”

  1. I just love this whole concept! It provides shelter, teaches skills, encourages self-sufficiency while still building a sense of community. This should be a model for programs to address the growing number of homeless people.

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