The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre has been transformed into a 45-bed shelter site for Victoria’s homeless population. (Provided by the B.C. Government)

The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre has been transformed into a 45-bed shelter site for Victoria’s homeless population. (Provided by the B.C. Government)

Save-On-Foods arena transformed into 45-bed shelter for homeless population

People living in camps will be referred to the site by BC Housing, Island Health

The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre will be opening up as a 45-bed emergency response centre to house people moving from the encampments on Pandora Avenue and Topaz Park.

The shelter is set to open in the coming days, once all staff are in place. The site is one of the first in B.C. to use pop-up pods to provide privacy for those staying there.

READ ALSO: Couple evicted from Victoria hotel face homelessness themselves

BC Housing is partnering with PHS Community Services Society to operate the centre, which will receive people referred by Island Health and BC Housing. An effort will be made to keep couples and groups of people who wish to stay together, in one place.

READ ALSO: B.C. enacts provincial order to move homeless at Victoria encampments into hotels

People staying in the arena will have access to meals, washrooms, health-care services, addiction treatments and harm reduction, along with storage for personal belongings and other supports.

In addition, BC Housing has also partnered with the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness to open 12 temporary shelter spaces at a different location to provide culturally supportive services to Indigenous peoples.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

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