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Empowering Communities, Changing Lives.

Where Every Journey to Stability Begins.

At PEOPLE, we empower and employ people in Kelowna and surrounding Central Okanagan areas with lived and living experience to step into new roles for themselves. In helping them do that, we improve their lives and the community. By valuing and destigmatizing individuals, we can make a meaningful and lasting difference in the community in which we all live and work.

Together, We Build
Stronger Futures.

PEOPLE Lived Experience Society was founded with the idea that we are missing important pieces of the puzzle to solve issues of homelessness and substance use disorders. PEOPLE is a collaborative effort bridging this gap by recognizing the value of lived experience and peer support and the value of community in achieving social change. We employ, train, and support people with lived experience to work on the ground in front-line roles helping others currently experiencing those challenges to find the resources they need that are available in the community.


Number of People Experiencing Homelessness


Apartment Vacancy
Rate (Kelowna)


Total Number of
Available Shelters

Peer Testimonials

These testimonials are from people who have worked with our program. Their names have been withheld for privacy.

"This work has been such a blessing to my life. It has brought purpose to my life, and I look forward to going to work. It has built my confidence, self-esteem, mental health, and I keep learning and keeping my mind active. I appreciate the community of a team that I can lean on and feel connected to without judgement."

"I am a living example to those who are in a difficult situation, which gives hope to those who need it. Our program participants are happy to know I've been where they are rather than just working with people who have studied it."

"I loved learning about the water ceremony - I felt completely different leaving that ceremony than when I arrived. I am really looking forward to going to the upcoming opportunity to go to the sweat lodge as a team."

"Our work as Peers impacts the entire community as we reach people’s lives."

"I have learned a whole new language from taking the nonviolent communication training. It changed how I think. I have always been attracted to Indigenous people and the Indigenous specific part of the training opened my eyes to culture and history. I have more of an understanding now which impacts my work and the staff I support."

"I would not have been able to make it through if I did not have supportive employment."

"I have learned to work with people, how to communicate better, to be more confident in what I do, what my future goals are, how to receive feedback and know it is for my own benefit, and about boundaries as well as when and how to take a step back and put my recovery first."


PEOPLE Lived Experience Society uses traditional, non-traditional, and indigenous mentorship programs to help people heal, to help people learn new skills, and to set people up for success in the workplace and in their personal lives.