An individual experiencing homelessness stands on Leon Avenue in downtown Kelowna after receiving supplies from the Gospel Mission outreach team. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

An individual experiencing homelessness stands on Leon Avenue in downtown Kelowna after receiving supplies from the Gospel Mission outreach team. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)

New City of Kelowna shelter strategy in the works

The community shelter plan will be based on four core principles: choice, healing, community and safety

Integration is the key in the City Of Kelowna’s in-development community shelter plan.

The plan is set to provide a system-wide approach for shelter services and is founded on four core principles: choice, healing, community and safety.

To help guide deliberations over the location of shelters, the plan will also have a location consideration strategy that will help successfully integrate shelters into the community.

The plan emerged from a community consultation process on the future of sheltering services in Kelowna.

“The stakeholders involved in that process saw the value in such a plan, incorporating the views and wisdom of people who have experienced and are experiencing homelessness into a new and innovative vision for shelter services,” said Sue Wheeler, the city’s social development manager. “Having a clearly articulated plan will put Kelowna in a position to advocate for senior government investment in future shelter services that aligns with our community’s vision.”

The new plan will bring a higher level of coordination to services for people experiencing homelessness in Kelowna.

Smaller and more dispersed shelters would contain a variety of health and wellness services oriented to the people it serves, accomodating a greater range of choices and needs. The ultimate goal is to have equity and inclusion guide shelters’ operations, their physical design and staff training.

City council gave its feedback on the plan’s development thus far on Monday, March 1. The city now plans to further develop the plan and eventually bring it back to council for consideration later this year.

READ MORE: Kelowna council advocates for increased provincial social assistance payments

READ MORE: City of Kelowna takes High Road pump station above ground

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com


@michaelrdrguez
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