Central Okanagan Food Bank responds to West Kelowna hygiene centre proposal

Plans for a new hygiene centre in West Kelowna, B.C., have been put on hold after concerns were raised about the potential impact to the community.

central okanagan food bank responds to west kelowna hygiene centre proposal

The proposal is for a vacant building off of Churchill Road in the downtown core, which is owned by the Central Okanagan Food Bank.

“The reason why it’s vacant (is) because over the last couple years, there’s been so many clients that have had to access the food bank, we actually had to lease [another] building. And currently our lease is up in the end of September,” said Central Okanagan Food Bank CEO Trevor Moss.

“We have been really looking throughout the city to see if we can find another new building to lease until we actually build a purpose-built food bank here in the City of West Kelowna. Who knows, we may have to go back there in September. We don’t know yet.”

central okanagan food bank responds to west kelowna hygiene centre proposal
2:33 Concerns being raised about hygiene centre

The food bank does not need permission from council to move forward with a hygiene facility as the property is already zoned for it, but officials with the food bank say it was not their idea.

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“There was a group of people that came and approached us with the City of West Kelowna, and some not-for-profit providers, trying to find a solution towards what was taking place with the homeless population,” said Moss.

“We just want to be clear that it wasn’t our initiative. Our core mandate is to actually feed people and so that’s where we need to stay in that lane.”

There are no official plans for the facility and a decision on whether or not to move forward with the facility was deferred by council last week.

Council will revisit the proposal at one of their upcoming meetings.

central okanagan food bank responds to west kelowna hygiene centre proposal
2:21 Low income resident at risk of losing everything

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