Kelowna homeless shelter soon to be homeless itself; asks for help finding new space | Kelowna News | iNFOnews

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Kelowna homeless shelter soon to be homeless itself; asks for help finding new space

The Inn from the Cold shelter is pictured in this contributed photo.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Inn from the Cold
July 31, 2018 - 2:23 PM

KELOWNA - Inn from the Cold, a 40-bed homeless shelter in downtown Kelowna, is taking the unusual step of asking the public for help finding a new home after the society received an abrupt eviction notice.

The eviction notice for the Sutherland Street shelter takes effect Sept. 30, executive director Jan Shulz said in a press release, and the society desperately needs a replacement by Nov. 1 to avoid putting people back on the street.

News of the possible closing comes even as the 80-bed Cornerstone shelter on Leon Avenue recently confirmed it would be closing down at the end of March, 2019.

Run by the John Howard Society of the Central Okanagan, the 80-bed shelter on Leon Avenue has been the source of complaints by some local business owners, underscoring the difficulty Inn from the Cold may have in relocating its shelter which has also been the source of neighbourhood complaints.

Also facing eviction — and likely just as difficult time finding a replacement home — is the Columbia Bottle Depot on Kirschner Road which must vacate by Sept. 30. The recycling facility has been the source of numerous police and bylaw complaints as homeless bottle-pickers worked the streets in the area, often sleeping outside local businesses

The closures come as the city approaches implementation of the Journey Home task force recommendations on ending street homelessness. Based on the Housing First principle, the strategy will first tackle visible street homelessness by rapidly creating housing for those on the street and then dealing with their other needs afterward.

If you can help Inn from the Cold find a new home, contact Jan Shulz at 778-363-6403.

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