Cranbrook firefighters kick in for new centre

Joint donations from eight locals across the province total $675,000 for new Burn Fund Centre

Representatives of the Cranbrook Fire Department this week donated $25

Representatives of the Cranbrook Fire Department this week donated $25

The dream is that much closer to reality, and the Cranbrook Fire Department is helping it on its way.

Firefighters from Cranbrook this week journeyed to Vancouver to donate $25,000 towards the new $13.1 million Burn Fund Centre. The Cranbrook donation is earmarked to help build the kitchen facility on the third floor of the buildling, which itself is to be built by the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund.

The Burn Fund Centre will be located at 3891 Main Street in Vancouver.

The Cranbrook firefighters were joined by locals from Burnaby, Delta, Kamloops, Kelowna, North Vancouver District, Richmond and Surrey, for total contributions of $675,000.

“We’ve seen firsthand that helping with accommodation for burn and trauma survivors and their families can be one of the most significant contributions to help survivors physically and emotionally recover and live a full life,” said Mike Hurley, President of the Burn Fund. “We’re so grateful that the Firefighters in Cranbrook have shown such leadership in helping us meet this critical need.”

A press release issued by the British Columbia Professional Firefighters Burn Fund stated that the province is experiencing a critical shortfall in accommodation for burn and trauma patients and their family caregivers.

“Patients’ health may be compromised when they have to return home sooner than medically advised or live in accommodations not suited to recovery from a burn or trauma,” the release said. “Each year almost 700 children and adults from across the province are admitted to the BCPFF Burn, Plastic and Trauma Unit at Vancouver General Hospital and BC Children’s Hospital suffering serious trauma.”

Cases from outside the Lower Mainland make up 27 per cent of cases, and 60 per cent of those are paying for private sector accommodation for an average of eight weeks.

The new $13.1 million Burn Fund Centre will provide eight short-term stay units to meet the critical shortfall in appropriate accommodation for burn and trauma patients and their family caregivers. The Centre will also house the offices of the BC Professional Fire Fighters Association and Burn Fund and include ground floor retail space to help fund the ongoing operation of the building. The Burn Fund has secured 80 per cent of necessary funding and is currently in the midst of a capital campaign.