Kelowna has received the Age-Friendly BC Community Recognition from the BC Ministry of Health. (File)

Kelowna receives accolades for accessibility and inclusivity

“Receiving this provincial recognition reaffirms that everyone is welcome in Kelowna,” said Mayor

The City of Kelowna recently received an award by the BC Ministry of Health for building an inclusive city that is welcome to everyone.

Known as the Age-Friendly BC Community Recognition award, it was given to the city for its work through the Community for All Action Plan.

“Receiving this provincial recognition reaffirms that everyone is welcome in Kelowna,” said Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran.

“Through both Imagine Kelowna and council priorities, we have a vision of a community that provides opportunities for people of all ages, abilities, backgrounds and identities. This is a commendation of work done by city staff to date and priorities set but we look forward to more work that makes Kelowna vibrant, inclusive and diverse.”

The action plan was adopted in 2016 with the goal of implementing policies, plans and programs to ensure the city is healthy, safe, active and inclusive for seniors, children and those with diverse abilities.

Of the 31 action items outlined in the plan, 10 actions are complete and 16 are in progress or ongoing.

“These includes work done by the city to: assess 76 civic buildings and 157 city parks for accessibility and safety, create an Outstanding Neighbour Awards Recognition program to inspire connections between neighbours and implementing an annual budget for accessibility retrofits for city sidewalks, wheelchair letdowns, intersections and transit stops,” read a release from the City of Kelowna.

Nine other B.C. communities have been recognized as age-friendly by the province this year including, Cranbrook, Gibsons, Houston, Lake Cowichan, Nanaimo, Naramata, Okanagan Falls, Osoyoos and Rossland. There are currently 57 officially recognized age-friendly communities in B.C.

For more information on Kelowna’s Healthy City Strategy and the Community for All Action Plan visit kelowna.ca.

To learn more about the Province’s Age-Friendly Recognition Program visit gov.bc.ca/agefriendly.

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