KELOWNA, British Columbia, November 16, 2006 — Mountainview Village, a new $10.7 million assisted living development for low-income seniors and individuals living with disabilities, celebrated the opening of Phase II today with federal, provincial and community funding partners.
"Housing projects like this one in Kelowna will help ensure that our lower-income seniors and individuals living with disabilities continue to lead active and independent lives," said Ron Cannan, Member of Parliament for Kelowna – Lake Country, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development. "Canada's new government is proud to support projects like these. We are also helping seniors and pensioners through a proposed Tax Fairness Plan that will allow income splitting and deliver more than a billion dollars in tax relief annually."
The new development is operated by the Good Samaritan Society. The 52 assisted living units, which are funded under the Independent Living BC (ILBC) program, along with 15 new private pay apartments, augment the existing Mountainview Village by providing additional affordable housing options to Kelowna seniors and individuals with disabilities. The Good Samaritan Society operates four other similar developments in BC, including developments in Penticton, Gibons and Salmon Arm.
Sindi Hawkins, MLA for Kelowna – Mission, said these units are part of the government's commitment to provide 5,000 residential care beds, assisted living units and supportive housing units with home support by the end of 2008.
"As our seniors population continues to grow, the value of providing safe, affordable housing for seniors and those living with disabilities grows with it," said Hawkins. "By building effective partnerships, we are able to expand the range of housing and care options available to our seniors so they can continue to live in their own communities."
Interior Health will provide ongoing funding for personal care and hospitality services to ensure tenants have access to the healthcare support they need to remain independent.
"The majority of seniors do not want or need 24-hour nursing care," said Alan Dolman, Interior Health Board Chair. "Through assisted living, we are committed to bringing options to seniors so they choose where to live and at the same time are able to address their own individual health care needs."
"Kelowna's seniors are already benefiting from the addition of these assisted living homes to the community they helped to build," says Sharon Shepherd, Mayor of Kelowna.
"It is very rewarding for us to be able to provide lower income seniors with a high quality supported living environment and we are grateful to the B.C. government and Interior Health for entrusting us with the means to do it," says Phil Gaudet, President and CEO, the Good Samaritan Society.
The Government of Canada, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, will contribute more than $130 million by 2010 towards affordable housing in this province. The provincial government, through BC Housing, will provide a minimum of $34 million annually to subsidize the cost of units built under the Canada – BC Affordable Housing Agreement, as part of a larger strategy to provide a range of housing options for British Columbians in greatest need.
The second phase of Mountainview Village, operated by the Good Samaritan Society, consists of 52 assisted living units under the Independent Living BC (ILBC) program, with an additional 15 life lease market units. The development, at 1540 KLO Road in Kelowna, was opened to residents in April of this year. Phase I of Mountainview has 105 units including 37 affordable housing units, 34 one-bedroom life lease market units, and 34 two-bedroom life lease market units.
Assisted living tenants receive two meals a day, weekly housekeeping and linen services, 24-hour emergency response, personal care services and recreational and social opportunities.
The Good Samaritan Society
The Good Samaritan Society, a Lutheran Social Service Organization, has more than 55 years experience in providing continuing care, assisted living and other specialized health care services and facilities in an innovative and caring environment. It is one of the largest voluntary health care providers in Canada. Created in 1949, the society has played a key role in the development of new and innovative programs — ones that are becoming industry standards across Canada.