Location: Woodwynn Farms, 7789 West Saanich Rd, Victoria, BC
Yesterday, in the midst of our province’s overdose and homelessness crises, the BC Agricultural Land Commission (ALC) and the District of Central Saanich maneuvered to evict participants in our treatment centre onto the cold, rainy and drug-riddled streets.
Only twelve days before Christmas.
“NO OCCUPANCY” orders were posted by municipal officials on Woodwynn Farms’ Treatment Centre housing units, in a move that defies all logic.
“I will not allow our participants to be put out on the streets” asserted Richard Leblanc, Founder & Executive Director of the Creating Homefulness Society, operating Woodwynn Farms.
“It’s time for our provincial leadership to step in and do the right thing.
It’s time for action by Premier John Horgan, Minister Lana Popham, Ministry of Agriculture, Minister Judy Darcy, Ministry of Mental Health & Addictions, and Minister Selina Robinson, Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing”
The municipal action comes on the heels of the ALC’s decision to deny a permit for proper housing on Woodwynn.
The ALC stated that “…the social benefits of the proposal do not outweigh the priority given to agriculture” in the Woodwynn decision.
Yet the ALC recently approved a permit for a shopping mall at the Sidney Crossing project near the Victoria Airport, on over 10 acres of ALR farmland.
A recent fire at Woodwynn highlighted a need for safer and more stable housing, and BC Housing Authority appeared prepared to step up and support the next phases of housing up to 40 new participants over the next 3 years.
The BC Coroners Service just reported “Illicit overdoses claimed 1,208 lives in British Columbia between January and October of this year … an increase of 136 percent from the same period last year”
“I’m absolutely devastated” stated Kylie Janzen, a current Woodwynn participant. “I can’t go back to the streets. I’m not ready. I’ve worked really hard to get back to having a life with my daughter. Woodwynn has been the best place I’ve ever gone to. They’ve helped me make great strides, but I have a lot more work to do on myself. I know that”
To speak to Richard Leblanc and current participants in the Woodwynn treatment program please call (250) 544-1175
Recent letter to Premier Horgan:
Attention Premier John Horgan:
As you are well aware, people are dying in B.C.. By the end of the 2017 year we are expected to reach 1500 people. Which I’m sure you are also well aware of. They are overdosing. Families are being torn apart. Sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, Mothers, Fathers. No one is immune. Everyone seems to be struggling with what to do.
But yet there is an amazing community willing to help and they are at risk of being closed down because of bureaucratic nonsense. It is an addiction resource center in Victoria B.C. called Woodwynn Farms. And they are saving lives. I have been able to witness first hand how amazing Woodwynn Farms is. Participants are given a second chance. They are given a purpose, a reason to wake up in the morning. They are given a safe, healthy, consistent, caring lifestyle. And above all it is a long term, affordable place to stay to get the help they so desperately need.
They need you.
The people of B.C. need you.
Please watch the video below to give you a glimpse of what they are doing
The ALC recently decided to NOT allow Woodwyn to build temporary housing for 40 additional farm workers on less than 1% of their land . Although the ALC recently approved a larger parcel of farmland for a shopping mall in Sidney B.C.This is not fair.
So many people need Woodwynn. Now and in the future. Mr. Horgan you have a perfect opportunity to help save the lives of so many people. PLEASE HELP.
Sincerely, Kathy Price
For more information about Woodwynn Farms see: www.woodwynnfarms.org
Founder & Executive Director
Creating Homefulness Society
Cel: (250) 589-5805
“Believe in People…
…until they Believe in Themselves”