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October 27, 2017 11:01 pm

Red Cross Helping In Peace as well as Fort McMurray

Thursday, May 5, 2016 @ 12:38 PM

Prince George, B.C.-  While Red Cross  is already  working hard to assist those  displaced by the Fort McMurray  area of Alberta and is  actively involved in  assisting  residents in the Peace Region of BC who have been  impacted  by the  numerous fires in that  part of BC.

“We are already assisting one person in the Peace  who  lost their home” says Jesse Bowan, , Community Planning and Response Co-Ordinator for the Red Cross BC and Yukon  Branch.    With  6  evacuation alerts in place  in the Peace, Bowan says  there are already Red Cross Volunteers working in that region  and others are  on standby ready to go  should those alerts become  evacuation orders.

As for the Fort McMurray  disaster,  the Federal  and Alberta governments have each announced they will match  every public dollar donated to the Red Cross  Alberta disaster fund.  Bowen says it’s too early to say  how much money has been  donated so far  as calls and donations are  coming in “fast and furious”.

Cash donations will  go towards supporting those  impacted by the fire  says Bowen “right now,  supports are in the way of the reception centres, the call   centre we have up and running and  supporting  ESS and local authorities in their shelters.”

With  more than 80 thousand  Ft. McMurray residents  displaced from their homes,  many of the homes  destroyed,  the recovery  for  Ft.Mac residents will take  a long time after the fire has been extinguished.  “As the days move on, and weeks and months ahead,   we will help people who lost their  homes,  those who didn’t have insurance, or are having gaps in the services they need  and we help with everything from food and clothing to   finding their lodging to  settling into a new place. Sometimes we will help with things like first months rent,  or  if their  home has been damaged and they don’t have the funds to make repairs we can sometimes help with that.  But right now,  it’s reconnecting  families and loved ones, shelter,  food  water, blankets clothing.”

The number to call  to  check on   the  whereabouts of family or friends is 1-888-350-6070.

Cash donations are preferred says Bowen “When people donate goods,  it’s really well intentioned, but  it doesn’t always meet the needs of people looking  for help.”

If  you would like to make a donation to the Alberta disaster  fund,  there are several  options:

Make a donation  at any BC Liquor store ( $2 and $5 dollar increments)

Connect with the Red Cross  at  1-888-418-1111.

Text REDCROSS  to 30333  to donate $5 dollars,   or  text REDCROSS to 45678  to make a $10 dollar  donation  or connect  with the  Red Cross  on the website

The road to recovery from  such disasters is a long one says Bowen “Red Cross  is there on the ground with them for  months and sometimes years to come, that was  the case with the Alberta  floods and with Slave Lake, helping them get back on their feet and helping them get back to a new normal.”


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