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West Kelowna homeless shelter finally opens

The Stevens Road emergency shelter opened today, Jan. 24, 2020, close to a month later than originally planned.
January 24, 2020 - 3:07 PM

A call that went out from the West Kelowna Shelter Society earlier this week has helped them get the region’s latest homeless shelter open a week earlier than had been forecast earlier this month.

The society took to Facebook asking for volunteers to help set everything up so people could take up residency today, Jan. 24.

The homeless shelter is made up of four trailer units set up at 1160 Stevens Rd.

The province says in a media release the trailers have bunks, showers, toilets and other amenities and the society will have at least two staff members on site around the clock.

It was originally expected to open at the beginning of January but there were delays partly because the owner got cold feet for awhile about letting B.C. Housing use his land, then winter storms prevented the two larger housing units from being driven up the Coquihalla Highway.

As of Monday of this week they were still waiting for the beds to be delivered.

The temporary shelter offers accommodation for 40 people and is to remain open until March 31.

The society has operated a shelter that turned into transitional housing on Brown Road in downtown Westbank since 2018. It put in 10 mats recently because of the extreme cold weather earlier this month that has now become much warmer.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Rob Munro or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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