Dozens of Kelowna residents preparing to move from homeless shelters into their own homes - InfoNews

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Dozens of Kelowna residents preparing to move from homeless shelters into their own homes

Mariah and Swan will soon be moving out of a shelter and into their first home together.
Image Credit: Submitted/B.C. Housing
March 12, 2020 - 7:30 PM

Kelowna’s newest supportive housing project will welcome residents to start moving in during the week of March 23.

The 50-room facility is called Samuel Place and is on McIntosh Road in Rutland. Since it’s right across the street from a housing complex called McIntosh Place, the John Howard Society, which will run the home, chose another name. Samuel was the name of John Howard’s best friend, Dawn Himer, executive director of the society, told iNFOnews.ca.

The first 40 new residents will come from Fuller Place, which was opened in December as an emergency shelter for people living in other shelters who qualified to move into Samuel Place.

That includes Mariah and Swan, a young couple that have been living in segregated shelter spaces for about a year. This will be their first time actually being able to live together.

“This is a real, real special event for them – they are really excited to have their own place,” Himer said. “His mom taught him to be a gentleman and show respect and, I’m telling you, he is a gentleman.”

Dawn Himer, Executive Director of the John Howard Society in one of the couples' rooms.
Dawn Himer, Executive Director of the John Howard Society in one of the couples' rooms.

Samuel Place actually has room for 53 residents in its 50 rooms since three are for couples. Another six are for people with disabilities.

Each room is like a hotel room, with no separate bedrooms. The couples’ rooms are larger, with the bed set off to the side but no door to be able to close.

A meeting will be held next week for neighbours as a first step towards creating a community advisory committee.

Samuel Place on McIntosh Road in Rutland.
Samuel Place on McIntosh Road in Rutland.

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