In times of emergency you get to see the true character of people and community. It is wonderful to see how a community and region bands together. Yesterday, the Peace River Regional District (PRRD) declared a local state of emergency, due to an astonishing number of fires that flared up, and the strong winds that kept them ablaze. Within hours several areas in the region were on evacuation alert or were being evacuated. All of the local fire departments and services were out in full force.
What caught my attention these last two days was all of the messages of support, help, and volunteering. Residents were and still are reaching out and offering their trailers, water tanks, houses, trucks, horse trailers, you name it I have seen an offer for help. Today, on my lunch break I stopped into the North Peace SPCA to lend a hand, as they have been housing all of the animals from the affected residents, I was overwhelmed by the number of people helping out. Not only that, but our office (Fort St John PRRD Office) has received numerous phone calls and walk-ins of people wanting to help. I am impressed with the level of support my new community offers.
With all of the information and photos on social media, at times I found it difficult to sift through what was important. I had family and friends for overseas messaging during the night, as the news broke, worried at what they were seeing on Facebook. Residents need to be aware there are emergency programs and procedures in place and in this case the Peace River Regional District was the source authority. The best place to find accurate information is on the PRRD website, which allows you to subscribe to the RSS feed or the PRRD Facebook page. In emergencies it is always important to find out who is the leading source and subscribe to their updates.
Thank you to all of the Fire Departments, services, residents, volunteers, and community for doing a fantastic job. I am proud to call this community my new home.