While Qualicum Beach council considers helping a Syrian refugee family, it continues to look into long-term options for the town-owned house on Sunningdale Road
“The town reported publicly that we were going to pursue a short term and a long-term strategy for the buildings, both the Harlech Road (fire hall) and Sunningdale,” said the town’s chief administrative office Daniel Sailland.
“On the short term we’re working with town and community interest groups on the Syrian refugee issue and then on the long term… we’ll take the next 12 to 18 months to narrow that down to a few key ideas.”
Sailland said they have sent letters asking the proponents to “continue fleshing out your ideas and we’ll continue working with you.”
“This is where this dementia friendly proposal comes in. It’s more of a long-term proposal for us,” that he said may still be a viable option.
“Luke Sales (director of planning) is working with each one of the proponents and what we wanted to do is to narrow down those long-term visions by March, so council can revisit the issue,” Sailland said.
He said the Sunningdale house has a kitchen and rooms that make it suitable for a temporary family stay, but that is not a long-term solution.
“Our focus in the short term has got to be clear — we’re going to move forward to see if there’s an appetite in working with the general community (to bring in refugees) on the 25th, and whether or not the building is suitable and if it is, then that’s the preferred choice for council.”
There is a public information meeting on sponsoring a refugee family, Monday, January 25, 4 to 6 p.m. at the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre.