Pushing carts of ice cream to help direct the homeless in the right direction is the plan of a local nonprofit.
Some say similar programs could be the solution to getting Austin's growing homeless population off the streets. While others say it's exploitation.
For Robert Burton it was a way to get on the right path. He was homeless and lived on South Congress Avenue downtown for three years.
"It's just eating and living wherever you can," said Burton. "It's hard to hold a job when you can't take a shower and you can't clean up."
But last year during SXSW, Mobile Loaves and Fishes came along with an opportunity that changed his life.
"They still have value they still have something to contribute and make our city a great place," said Nate Schlueter of Mobile Loaves and Fishes. "What we've done is released the opportunity for them to be their own litttle mini business owner for the day.
The organization launched their 'Street Treats Program' for the first time at SXSW 2012. The program allows homeless people to sell ice cream out of a cart for the day.
They earn all the cash and tips made after they pay the wholesale price of the ice cream sold.
"We are able to turn the tables on what you typically see of homelessness and put these guys in a first-class cart, in a first-class uniform and let them go out with dignity," said Schlueter.
Burton made over $50 an hour his first day on the cart. But it didn't stop there, after SXSW the program got Robert off the streets and into an RV home.
Mobile Loaves and Fishes has helped to house 75 homeless people in the eight years they've been running.
At SXSW 2012, a New York-based advertising company launched a program to help the homeless get money by selling WiFi internet access. The "homeless hotspots"
sparked international controversy after some called it exploitation.
But for Burton, he said it was a push in the right direction that he needed to get his life on the right track.
"When you got somebody in your corner people like Nate and Mobile Loaves I've got a safety net," said Burton.
This year the program is expanding from one cart to four. They plan on launching at 3 p.m. on Sunday, March 10th, at the corner of 11th and Congress.