New Okanagan singles group aims to help people connect during pandemic

Sonja Ruevekamp and Nedeen Bazley have had challening experiences while looking for love in the Okanagan

Two Kelowna women, tired of the dating scene in the Okanagan, have taken it upon themselves to create a positive space for singles to mingle.

Sonja Ruevekamp and Nedeen Bazley created the FaceBook group, Okanagan Singles, after being disappointed with some of the attitudes in other local dating groups. A week after it launched, Okanagan Singles is up to nearly 50 members and counting.

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Ruevekamp and Bazley created the group with the intention of focusing on positivity, after experiencing “harsh negativity and bullying” in a different singles group.

Bazley said she’s struggled personally with dating apps and other singles groups, as many people aren’t looking for a serious relationship.

“Sometimes I find it can be hard to meet people, especially in Kelowna. There’s a lot of people that have their established friend groups and just stick to their own,” said Bazley.

The COVID-19 pandemic only worsened things for Bazley.

“Living by myself and then being on lock-down is really hard and get’s lonely, so it’s really nice to be able to connect with other people who feel the same.”

As of now, the group is trying to figure out what kind of COVID-19 safe activities can be held, with meet-ups at local restaurants one of the things they’ve been looking at. When the time is right again, Bazley says she has many events planned such as hiking and karaoke others.

Seeing as the group is only a week old, there are no dating success stories to report yet. But Bazley and Ruevekamp are confident that will change soon, even if the group is limited to online interactions for the time being.

READ MORE: Single? Don’t mingle: Okanagan dating scene doomed during pandemic


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