A mandatory evacuation for the city of Fort McMurray, Alberta, population 80,000, is in effect as rampant wildfire continues to engulf everything in its path. The wildfire is consuming homes, businesses, and forests, but thankfully no injuries or deaths have been reported.
Your prayers and generous donations are needed.
“We ask you to join World Renew in praying for the people of Fort McMurray and for the emergency personnel who are responding to this disaster,” said Ida Kaastra-Mutoigo, World Renew Canada Director. “Pray for safety and that the fires will soon be contained.”
As firefighters and first responders work to contain the flames, World Renew Disaster Response Services (DRS) is monitoring the situation and connecting with local and provincial partners to determine how it can best be of assistance.
“Once it is safe to visit the area, we will be able to better coordinate our efforts and determine our first steps in recovery,” says Henry Visscher, World Renew DRS regional manager for Alberta.
It will take a long, coordinated effort between local officials, non-governmental organizations, and the provincial emergency agency to meet the needs of fire survivors.
"We worked very well in the months and years after the 2013 flood in High River, Alberta," said Visscher about World Renew's connections in Alberta. "This strengthened our relationships to one another and will only be an asset as we serve the individuals and families so devastated by these fires.”
For now, the Christian Reformed Church is doing its part by responding to the needs of those displaced by the fires. Trinity CRC in Edmonton held a prayer service on May 4 that included many displaced families. Several CRC members have also opened their doors to take in people who had nowhere else to go.
Your prayers and generous donations are also needed. Gifts marked "Alberta Fires 2016"** will support the fire response efforts in the days, weeks, and years to come.
*Photo courtesy of Reuters.
**Donations will not be matched by the Canadian government.