WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Phoenix rises in warmth
It’s warm at Phoenix Centre this winter and, more importantly, that ambience doesn’t have to be maintained by staff relighting the pilot of the furnace.
A new furnace and hot-water tank were installed this year, replacing a behemoth in the basement that would go out on a regular basis.
Sometimes more than once a night.
Executive director Sian Lewis said the rehabilitation facility is still raising money to pay the $200,000 bill to upgrade the heater, but were delighted 10 per cent of it came from the community when it held its Turn Up the heat campaign in February.
That event, which saw Phoenix Centre staff camp out overnight at Aberdeen Mall to talk about the work they do and accept donations, raised $20,000.
Staff also had a presence throughout that month to talk about the work they do.
Several other sponsors assisted, including the mall’s guest services, which donated proceeds from its gift-wrap program in February, Purdy’s Chocolates, which donated some of its products for the centre to sell, and East Side Mario’s, which fed staff at the tent event.
The Blenz outlets at the mall and downtown donated $1 from all hot chocolates and mocha coffees they sold on Feb. 11 and Feb. 12.
The tent event was also sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Rangers, Jasco Rentals, Kamloops Paddlewheelers Lions Club, the City of Kamloops Community Safety and Citizens on Patrol programs, Visual Signs and Awards and illusionist Estry Hiltz, who performed during the fundraiser.
Members of Steelworkers Local 7619 and staff at Ajax Mines combined to donate $5,000 to the furnace campaign.
Replacing the furnace could have been a challenge, Lewis said, because the original was installed in the facility in the 1980s — after which the room to contain it was built.
However, furnace technology and design has changed in the ensuing decades and the job done by HPF Engineering and Westway Plumbing and Heating went smoothly, Lewis said.
Phoenix Centre is a 20-bed medically supported withdrawal-management program for adults and youth.
It also offers outpatient programs for people living with substance-abuse issues.
For more information or to donate, go online to phoenixcentre.org.