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268 New Assisted Living Units for Interior

PENTICTON, British Columbia, July 19, 2004 — More than 260 new assisted living apartments will be developed in eight communities throughout B.C.'s Interior. Subsidized by the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia through the Independent Living BC (ILBC) program, the apartments will provide affordable housing, personal care and hospitality services for low-income seniors and people with disabilities.

ILBC is a housing-for-health partnership that involves the provincial and federal governments, regional health authorities, and the private and non-profit sectors. Various housing operators submitted proposals to provide assisted living through ILBC, in response to calls for proposals issued by BC Housing and Interior Health. Today's announcement involves ILBC unit allocations to non-profit societies and private operators.

Today's announcement takes place at Village by the Station in Penticton, British Columbia's first purpose-built, non-profit campus of care. This brand new development includes 35 assisted living apartments, 60 residential care beds, four cottages with 40 beds for seniors with dementia, and an adult day program for up to 16 seniors. Village by the Station is operated by The Good Samaritan Society and subsidized by the provincial government, through BC Housing and Interior Health, and the federal government, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

"This partnership between the governments of Canada and British Columbia exemplifies what can be achieved when we work together for the common good," said the Honourable Andy Scott, Minister of State (Infrastructure). "This endeavour will help make a positive difference in the lives of the province's low income seniors and persons with disabilities who require some help on a daily basis."

"We are witnessing one of the largest demographic shifts that B.C. has ever experienced," said Colin Hansen, Minister of Health Services. "In the next two decades, the number of seniors in this province will more than double. Many seniors are healthy, active and independent, and while they may need some assistance with daily living, the vast majority do not want or need 24-hour professional nursing care. Assisted living is a great option for these seniors, and we are working hard to make assisted living more accessible and affordable throughout the province."

"Today's announcement is excellent news for the Interior," said Bill Barisoff, MLA for Penticton-Okanagan Valley. "It demonstrates that by working together with the private, non-profit and health sectors, we can come up with creative, workable solutions to offer more housing and care options in cities, small towns and rural communities."

ILBC encompasses two types of housing: independent housing with some support and assisted living for those who require a greater level of care. Typically, these units are self-contained apartments in developments where tenants receive personal care and hospitality services, such as some meals, housekeeping and laundry services, recreational opportunities and 24-hour response system.

As a middle option between home care and residential care, assisted living offers a more tailored approach in addressing individuals' housing and personal care needs.

"We are improving the way we have cared for seniors over the years by providing more options to promote choice and independence, such as assisted living," said Alan Dolman, Interior Health Board Chair. "Up until now, seniors requiring assistance had few options - care at home or living in a facility. Interior Health is committed to bringing choice to seniors."

This announcement brings the total number of ILBC units allocated in Interior Health to 576, with developments in 100 Mile House, Cranbrook, Castlegar, Chase, Merritt, Fernie, Vernon, Trail, Williams Lake, Kelowna, Armstrong, Summerland, Oliver, Creston, Grand Forks, Nakusp, Penticton, Invermere, Nelson, Kamloops, Salmon Arm and Golden.

ILBC will create a total of 3,500 independent apartments with support services across the province by 2006. The ILBC units announced today, combined with the 1,955 units already awarded, brings the total allocation to 2,223 units across the province — about 64 per cent of the target.

ILBC is funded in part through the Canada-British Columbia Affordable Housing Program Agreement. The government of Canada, through CMHC, will contribute $88.7 million towards affordable housing in this province. The provincial government, through BC Housing, will provide $29.7 million annually to subsidize the costs of units built under this agreement, as part of a larger strategy to provide a range of housing options for vulnerable British Columbians.

For more information about ILBC, visit www.bchousing.org online.

Media Contact:

Rhonda Chaput
BC Housing
(604) 439-4734

Christina Wensley
CMHC
(604) 737-4032

Jan Enns
Interior Health
(250) 862-8394

Backgrounder

Assisted Living for Interior

A total of 268 assisted living units were announced today in eight developments throughout B.C.'s Interior. Of these, six will be managed by non-profit societies and two will be privately operated.

The Independent Living BC program will create a total of 3,500 independent housing units with support services and assisted living apartments across the province. To date, 2,223 units have been allocated, about 64 per cent of the target.

Kamloops
John Howard Society of the Thompson Region
76 units
New Build

The John Howard Society will build a four-storey assisted living development at 529 Seymour Street in Kamloops, across the street from the Desert Gardens seniors' complex and close to shopping and medical offices. The development will include 76 one-bedroom apartments; tenants will receive personal care and hospitality services, such as some meals, housekeeping, laundry, recreational opportunities, and 24-hour emergency response.

This project has received commitment from BC Housing and Interior Health. BC Housing will provide an annual operating subsidy of approximately $450,000 to the Society. Construction is set to begin later this month.

Kelowna
The Good Samaritan Society
52 units
New Build

The Good Samaritan Society will build a second phase at Mountainview Village at 1540 KLO Road in Kelowna that will include 52 subsidized assisted living units and 15 private-market life-lease apartments. Tenants will receive personal care and hospitality services, such as some meals, housekeeping, laundry, recreational opportunities, and 24-hour emergency response. The Society plans to use one floor of the new development to provide housing for adults with disabilities.

This project has received commitment from BC Housing and Interior Health. BC Housing will provide an annual operating subsidy of approximately $356,000 to the Society. Construction is scheduled to begin in September.

Vernon
The Good Samaritan Society
38 units
New Build

As the result of a competitive Expression of Interest process, The Good Samaritan Society has been invited to submit a detailed proposal to build 38 subsidized assisted living apartments in Vernon. The development will also include 35 private-market life-lease apartments. The Society has acquired a development site at 4900 - 20th Street in Vernon, close to shopping and amenities.

Golden
Provincial Rental Housing Corporation
5 units
New Build

Through a unique arrangement to address the specific needs of this rural community, the Provincial Rental Housing Corporation, the land-holding arm of BC Housing, is exploring the development of five units of assisted living in Golden, on a site provided by Interior Health.

Nelson
Mountain Lake Seniors' Community
29 units
Rent Supplements

Park Place Seniors Living Inc. will develop a new campus of care in Nelson that will provide 93 new residential care beds and 40 assisted living apartments. Twenty-nine of the assisted living apartments will receive rent supplements through Independent Living BC, to make them more affordable for seniors with low incomes, and 85 of the residential care beds will be funded by Interior Health for seniors with complex health care needs. The campus of care will be located next to Mount St. Francis off Gordon Road.

Invermere
Columbia Garden Village
8 units
Rent Supplements

Construction has just begun on this 65-unit seniors' housing development at 1126 - 5th Street in Invermere, next to the Invermere and District Hospital. Eight assisted living units at the development will be subsidized through Independent Living BC. The development is operated by Golden Life Management, a B.C.-based company that operates seniors' housing developments in Castlegar, Cranbrook, Creston, Trail and Fernie.

Penticton
Conversion of Penticton Retirement Centre
30 units
Conversion

The current Penticton Retirement Centre is no longer suitable for residential care and will be converted to 30 assisted living apartments. Former residents of the retirement centre have moved to Good Samaritan Society Village by the Station on Hastings Avenue in Penticton.

On the basis of a competitive call for Expressions of Interest, BC Housing and Interior Health are negotiating with a non-profit society to develop a detailed proposal to convert the Penticton Retirement Centre to assisted living.

Salmon Arm
Conversion of Pioneer Lodge
30 units
Conversion

Pioneer Lodge in Salmon Arm is being converted to assisted living apartments, to better serve the needs of seniors with health needs in this community. On the basis of a competitive call for Expressions of Interest, BC Housing and Interior Health are negotiating with a non-profit society to develop a detailed proposal to convert the building to assisted living.

A new residential care facility is being built in Salmon Arm, located on four acres on the corner of 15th Avenue and 30th Street N.E. The new facility will be operated by the Good Samaritan Society; residents of Pioneer Lodge may be moved to this site or another facility of their preference.

Total Independent Living BC units allocated: 268

Visit the Province's Web site at www.gov.bc.ca for online information and services.

The Good Samaritan Society

The Good Samaritan Society, a Lutheran Social Service Organization, has over 50 years' experience in providing continuing care, assisted living and other specialized health care services and facilities in an innovative and caring environment. It is the largest volunteer-based health care provider in Alberta and one of the largest in Canada. In 1994, the Society successfully piloted assisted living in Alberta, which emphasized a social rather than a medical approach to care. In addition to Village by the Station in Penticton, the Society operates Mountainview Village assisted living in Kelowna, and has several other supportive housing residences in development in British Columbia.

Housing Development Facts
Village by the Station
270 Hastings Avenue, Penticton
Number of Units:
35 assisted living apartments
60 residential care beds
40 beds in four cottages, for seniors with dementia

Seniors have access to affordable housing and personal care services.

Partnership Contributions

The provincial government, through BC Housing, provided construction financing and will also provide $5.5 million in operating subsidies to the society over the next 35 years for the assisted living apartments. Interior Health is contributing the land, valued at about $1 million, and will provide operating funds for the residential care units, assisted living apartments, dementia cottages and adult day centre. The federal government, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, provided a capital grant worth $1.05 million through the Canada-British Columbia Affordable Housing Agreement. The Good Samaritan Society manages and operates the $15.7 million development.

Media Contact:

Rhonda Chaput
BC Housing
(604) 439-4734

Christina Wensley
CMHC
(604) 737-4032

Jan Enns
Interior Health
(250) 862-8394

Joanne Dusterbeck
The Good Samaritan Society
(780) 431-3706

Visit the Province's Website at www.gov.bc.ca for online information and services.

News source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC)

 

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