Soda Creek Road resident Sharon Mallard with Samaritan’s Purse volunteer Andy Northup, who helped her sort through the fire damage at her property from the White Lake fire last summer. Samaritan’s Purse confirmed this week it will be setting up an office in Williams Lake in the new year to continue helping fire victims. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Samaritan’s Purse heading back to assist Cariboo wildfire victims

Organization plans to work alongside people who have experienced loss

A volunteer organization that was instrumental in helping uninsured and under-insured wildfire victims this summer will be returning to work out of Williams Lake in the new year.

“We will be working directly alongside folks that have experienced loss and helping connect them with whatever supports they need to move forward with their recovery, whether it’s with other organizations or whether it’s with private business,” said Brent Davis, response director for Samaritan’s Purse Canada. “It something we’ve been doing over the past year in Fort McMurray and it’s been absolutely incredible.”

Davis said the “huge footprint” of these fires presents unique challenges to getting people the help they need.

The intent is not to go in to help people with a specific solution, and driving them toward that solution, Davis explained.

“We are taking an individual approach with each family that wants to work with us and helping them develop a recovery plan and providing resources to help them achieve that plan.”

It is hoped that individuals that are working through the aftermath of losing their homes and property won’t have to knock on the doors of every organization in the community to see where they can find supports.

“We try to compile all the information to help.”

Davis said they are in the process of determining where to set up an office in Williams Lake and Samaritan’s Purse recovery program manager Steve Gross will be in the lakecity next week to sort out the details.

“We are hoping to be operational by January, with some unmet needs assessments and are already connecting with community members, not just in Williams Lake, but in 100 Mile House and Quesnel and want to be able to reach down into the Thompson Nicola Regional District (TNRD) which is where we were working originally back in the late summer.”

During the summer, between the Cariboo Regional District and the TNRD Samaritan’s Purse assisted 125 families with 87 volunteers who provided 2,520 hours of service, Davis said.

“While based in Williams Lake, our teams will be reaching out to rural communities that were impacted to ensure no one is left behind.”

Read More: Faith with feet on the ground at Calvary Church

Just Posted

Cross-country season finishes with some impressive results from Quesnel runners

Ruby Nicholas finished 7th at the provincials in Nanaimo

City, CRD approve potential referendum for rec centre upgrades

A referendum would only go through if the Joint Planning Committee receives a significant grant

Snow, sleet and rain predicted until Friday

Quesnel could see up to 5 cm of snow fall on Thursday

UPDATE: West Fraser to permanently reduce production in Quesnel, Fraser Lake

The move will affect 75 employees in Quesnel, 60 in Fraser Lake

Bus company eyeing passenger and cargo service departing from Williams Lake, stopping in Quesnel

Merritt Bus Shuttle Services Ltd. would have a driver based in Williams Lake for the route to Prince George

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

EU divorce deal in peril after two UK Cabinet ministers quit

Negotiators from Britain and the European Union have struck a proposed divorce deal that will be presented to politicians on both sides for approval, officials in London and Brussels said Tuesday.

Feds respond to sexual assault investigation at B.C. naval base

Report of Oct. 5 sexual assault on Vancouver Island base taken over by Canadian Forces National Investigation Service

Northern California fire death toll at 56; 130 missing

Many of the missing are elderly and from Magalia, a forested town of about 11,000 to the north of Paradise.

Canfor to buy 70 per cent stake in Swedish Vida Group for $580 million

The privately held company has nine sawmills in southern Sweden with an annual production capacity of 1.1 billion board feet.

Saudi prosecutor seeks death penalty in Khashoggi’s killing

Saudi Arabia’s top prosecutor is recommending the death penalty for five suspects charged with ordering and carrying out the killing of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi.

Mixing business and family: Trudeau turns to Singapore ancestors to widen trade

Trudeau’s ancestor, Esther Bernard, born Farquhar (1796-1838) was the daughter of Major-General William Farquhar (1774-1839), the first British Resident and Commandant of Singapore.

Baloney Meter: Will tougher penalties for gang members make Canada safer?

Since 2013, gang-related homicides in Canada’s largest cities have almost doubled

Early data suggests no spike in pot-impaired driving after legalization: police

Some departments said it’s too early to provide data, others said initial numbers suggest stoned driving isn’t on the rise

Most Read