The Canadian Red Cross and the province of B.C. have teamed up to provide additional financial support for wildfire evacuees.
In a media release, the province says financial assistance will be provided by the Red Cross to eligible households in one of three ways:
- $2,000 to eligible B.C. households whose primary residence has been severely affected by this season’s wildfires, based on structural loss information provided by Emergency Management B.C.
- $2,000 to eligible households who were evacuated from the Lytton region due to wildfires.
- $1,200 for B.C. households under mandatory evacuation order for longer than 10 consecutive days during the 2021 wildfire season.
Evacuated British Columbians need to register with the Red Cross to access the new supports. Evacuees can call the Red Cross at 1-800-863-6582, between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
Financial assistance provided through the Red Cross will not affect eligibility for supports through the provincial Emergency Support Services program.
Anyone who wants to support the Red Cross with a donation can do so online, by phone at 1-800-418-1111, or by texting FIRES to 45678.
As of Aug. 24, there are 24 evacuation orders impacting 3,782 properties and 111 alerts impacting 12,825 properties. Reception centres for evacuees are in place in Chilliwack, Kelowna, Merritt, Vernon, Penticton, Salmon Arm and Seabird Island-Agassiz.
Evacuees can also access a psychosocial wellness support line at 1-888-686-3022 to help cope with the stresses caused by wildfires.
B.C. remains under a state of emergency due to the wildfires until Aug. 31.
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