The huge outpouring of support for Fort McMurray after a wildfire swept through the city has generated $300 million for the Red Cross.
Wood Buffalo Mayor Melissa Blake says it was a new experience to work with the Red Cross.
“I’ve been happy to support Red Cross initiatives around the world, never did I imagine that the Red Cross would be supporting my world, our world right here in Wood Buffalo.”
Of the $300 million dollars, $104 million is matching funds from the federal government, and $30 million is from the province.
The Red Cross’s Conrad Sauve(SOH-vay) says $146 million has already been spent on initial emergency expenses like food, shelter, clean-up kits, and hygeine items. Now the focus turns to long-term recovery.
“We know from experience it takes time to recover from a disaster. The sprint of emergency is over, and now we’re in the long marathon of recovery. For some it may be weeks or months, for others it may be years.”
The money will now be going to things like rebuilding houses, funding community based-organizations, supporting business, and becoming more disaster resilient. (kdr)