Transitional storage program at the Gospel Mission
A transitional storage program in partnership with the City of Kelowna, BC Housing and Gospel Mission. In the first six months, 32 individuals who accessed the storage program have moved on into housing. An increase of 26 individuals began using the shelter system for the first time after accessing the storage program.
For people living without homes, being able to store their belongings can be transformational. It offers an opportunity to connect with services like appointments and meals, without fear of losing their belongings.
BC Housing is leading work with local service providers to use a coordinated approach to assess individuals’ needs and to support them into housing. The organization has more than 3000 units in Kelowna.
he City has partnered with BC Housing on seven projects by contributing land to BC Housing for projects like:
- Cardington Apartments
- Tutt Street Apartments
- Willowbridge Apartments
- New Gate Apartments
- Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society (i spa-us ki-low-na Heart of Kelowna)
Police & Crisis Team
Interior Health and the Kelowna RCMP partnered to create the Police and Crisis Team (PACT).
A dedicated psychiatric nurse and specially trained RCMP officer who together form the mental health and substance use crisis intervention team.
PACT responded to 160 calls between March and July, 2017. With PACT responding to these calls, it helps to divert visits to the Emergency Room (ER), and connection to services through personalized attention.
SEE:kelowna is a collaborative project between Metro Community and the Kelowna Museums Society.
Launched in August 2017, the project shares stories from community members whose lives have been affected by homelessness.
Canadian Mental Health Association
The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) currently has 21 people in supported housing through their Housing First program.
The organization also runs Willowbridge transitional housing (40 beds), and other housing assistance programs.
“..once they’re housed then they have a worker who can find them. They’ve got a place to store their stuff. We can start helping organize. We can connect them to brain injury services. We can connect them to those things that help them…” Keni Milne, Housing First Team Lead.
The City provided CMHA a $6,500 community social development grant in 2017. This grant provided partial funding for operations.
Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society
The Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society offers more than 30 culturally appropriate programs that support the community from preventing homelessness through to assisting people into housing.
The organization has services and programs for all ages as well as operates housing projects.
Bylaw Enforcement and RCMP partnership
Kelowna has a lot of “feet on the street,” with City of Kelowna Bylaw Enforcement and RCMP working with Park Ambassadors, Downtown Patrol teams, private security and Transit Security to keep streets and parks clean and safe.
Bylaw Enforcement and RCMP focus on making connections with people living without homes. They encourage and support them to access services while balancing the need to ensure that bylaws are followed to help keep the community safe for everyone.
Complex Needs Advocacy Paper
The development of the Complex Needs Advocacy Paper was led by the City of Kelowna’s Social Development and Real Estate Services Department and was supported by City staff, the Central Okanagan Journey Home Society (COJHS), and a team of consultants led by Urban Matters CCC. The City would like to acknowledge the contributions from a group of Intergovernmental and Municipal partners who contributed to the regional perspective outlined in the document, as well as a group of project stakeholders who were consulted throughout.