Bridge housing for Kelowna homeless set to open Monday | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Bridge housing for Kelowna homeless set to open Monday

December 13, 2019 - 1:51 PM

The last thing that needs to be put into place before homeless people can start moving into the bridge housing at Fuller Place in Kelowna is the phone system.

The hope is to have that all up and running on Monday so the first residents from the Cornerstone homeless shelter can start moving in, Dawn Himer, executive director of the John Howard Society, which manages both facilities, told today, Dec. 13.

“It will take the course of a few days to get everyone rounded up and settled in,” she said. “It won’t be done in one day.”

Fuller Place is called bridge housing. The facility will sleep 40 people who are either in Cornerstone or Kelowna's Gospel Mission shelters or the Recreation Avenue tent camp.

Once people move out of the shelters, that opens up spaces for the group of up to 50 people camped at Recreation Avenue.

The John Howard Society will provide vans to move the people and their possessions.

It’s too disruptive to try to move 40 people into Fuller in one day, just as it may be too much to fill all the beds opened up in the shelters in one day since orientation take about an hour for each person, Himer said.

The people selected to live at Fuller are likely to move to more substantial housing – small private rooms – at the new McIntosh supportive housing facility in Rutland when it’s opens in the spring.

First, though, the phone system has to be installed at Fuller Place because it’s tied into the door locking system.

There is an estimated 30 to 50 people camping at Recreation Avenue and others sleeping elsewhere in the city so there may still be some people left sleeping in tents until the Welcome Inn emergency shelter gets up and running in the next few weeks.

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