New shelter will help house people in Kelowna
KELOWNA - The Province, through BC Housing, has partnered with Kelowna Gospel Mission (KGM) to lease a new site for use as a temporary shelter for people experiencing homelessness.
Located at 858 Ellis St., the new shelter will have approximately 60 individual sleeping pods to provide guests with privacy, as well as shared washrooms, storage space and other amenities. Renovations are underway to convert the existing building into a shelter and are expected to be complete in September 2022.
The building will replace a temporary shelter at 550 Doyle Ave., which is closing soon because the property is scheduled for redevelopment.
KGM will operate the shelter and will have staff on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week to provide guests with meal services, laundry, security and support with accessing health and wellness services. KGM is an experienced non-profit housing provider that also operates the Leon Avenue shelter in Kelowna and will continue operating the Doyle Avenue shelter until it closes.
BC Housing will continue to work in partnership with the City of Kelowna to find suitable locations for a new permanent shelter and an additional temporary shelter.
Shelters are not a long-term solution to homelessness, which is why the Province is investing in a range of housing options and, through BC Housing, has opened 196 supportive homes in Kelowna since 2017.
- The Province is investing $500,000 to renovate the new shelter and will provide approximately $2.1 million in annual operating funding.
- In addition, the Province is providing a one-time startup grant of $25,000.
- Kelowna’s March 2020 point-in-time count identified at least 297 people experiencing homelessness in the community, which is a 4% increase from 2018.
A map showing the location of all announced provincially funded housing projects in B.C. is available online: https://www.bchousing.org/homes-for-BC
To learn about the steps the Province is taking to tackle the housing crisis and deliver affordable homes for British Columbians, visit: https://workingforyou.gov.bc.ca/