September 12, 2015 - 11:25 AM
VANCOUVER - Customers and employees of B.C. liquor stores have raised $102,000 to support victims of this summer's wildfires in the province.
The money will be donated to Red Cross relief efforts on behalf of those who lost their homes, businesses, livestock and other property when flames broke out near the communities of Rock Creek and Oliver.
Thirty homes were destroyed and hundreds of South Okanagan and Boundary residents were evacuated last month by the Rock Creek blaze, east of Osoyoos and the Testalinden fire, south of Oliver.
The Red Cross says some of the money has paid for immediate necessities such as blankets, food and water.
It will also support victim's longer-term needs, including the replacement of equipment and assistance with rent.
"The recovery for many in B.C.'s southern interior is only just beginning,” Red Cross B.C. director Kimberley Nemrava says. “This incredible generosity from the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch, its stores and customers will help Red Cross volunteers continue their outreach to people who lost homes to the flames.”
The B.C. Wildfire Service says the Testalinden blaze covers over 50 square kilometres and is 90 per cent contained, while the Rock Creek fire is fully contained but scorched 45-square kilometres before it was brought under control.
News from © The Canadian Press, 2015