Men-only recovery residence proposed for Kelowna

Fundraising is underway for a proposed 51-suite residence in Kelowna's Rutland neighourhood for men recovering from addiction and mental health issues.

The building called Freedom House is expected to cost at least $3.1 million and would be located at the corner of McCurdy and Rutland roads.

It will be operated by local faith-based charity Freedom's Door as an extension of the group's recovery programs.

"Our goal is to achieve safe, supported housing for the graduates of Freedom's Door," said Tom Smithwick, one of the directors.

"The graduates would be addicts who have achieved a minimum of 90 days of sobriety who wish to continue on in supported housing."

Llittle affordable housing in Kelowna

The charity already operates five duplexes in the Kelowna area, offering men in high-risk lifestyles counselling, support and shelter.

Smithwick said there is often a wait list for men seeking help and a lack of housing options once men complete the program.

 "Part of the problem they have is they wish to get back to a normal life ... but there is very very little affordable housing in Kelowna or the Okanagan Valley," he said.

Smithwick said the apartment building would also likely include post-addiction programming such as counselling, employment training and life skills.

Freedom's Door currently owns the land Freedom House will be built on but is fundraising for development costs.

Smithwick hopes construction will begin next year with an official opening in 2019.