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When it comes to epic Christmas cards, the Slade family of Gilbert, Arizona, has created quite a reputation.
For the past five years, their video productions have spread holiday cheer to their friends and family. This time, they’re adding a little something extra: a tiny home giveaway.
In their 2015 video Christmas card video, the family comes together to build a tiny home as the song “There’s No Place Like Home For the Holidays” plays in the background. At the end, they announce that they’re giving the home away.
“Around August, we were inspired to build a house for someone,” Micah Slade told TODAY.com. “We went to work researching, story-boarding the video and building this tiny house.” Slade, who owns a concrete construction company, said the whole family made a huge effort in building this home. “It has really been a good experience for our kids to work on something so hard for someone else for Christmas.”
The house, which measures 160 square feet with a 100-square-foot loft space, has a bathroom with a toilet and shower, a kitchen with a sink and refrigerator, and there’s even plumbing for a small washer/dryer combo.
"It’s fully insulated and very comfortable for a tiny living space,” he added.
“We’ve been fortunate to have very generous friends that have donated their time, skills and materials to build this tiny house,” Slade said. “We couldn’t have done this without their generous donations.” The family also personally put a few thousand dollars into it, along with countless hours over a three-month period.
“We want this home to go to someone who really needs it, so we didn’t want to raffle it off,” he said. That’s why they decided to do an essay contest instead. And the giving doesn’t stop there: Each entry fee requires a $20 donation to charity: water, a nonprofit that provides clean drinking water to people in need. It’s a cause they’ve been supporting for five years now.
“Charity: water is important to our family because it provides the most basic need that so many don’t have,” he said. “The great thing about the organization is that they give 100 percent of all money raised to those in need. We love the fact that when we give to them every single cent goes to help our brothers and sisters.”
Once a donation is made to the charity, people can email the family a short essay stating who should receive the house and why. “A committee of family and friends will help us decide who should get this house,” Slade explained. The deadline for entries is Dec. 18, 2015.
Essays have already been rolling in. “The response has been good,” he said. “Each entry has been a little bit different than the other. We wish we could give a tiny home to every entry, but unfortunately we have to decide on the person or small family who needs it the most.”
For more information about the contest, watch the video below:
This story was first published on December 14, 2015.