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City of Vernon extends gratitude to volunteers

“Seeing individuals wanting to give a helping hand makes me incredibly proud to be your Mayor.”
Mats and blankets greet wildfire evacuees at the ESS reception centre at Kal Tire Place in Vernon. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)

The City of Vernon is thanking those who have assisted its Emergency Support Services (ESS) Reception Centre over the past several days.

“Words cannot properly express how grateful we are for the time and care our ESS volunteers have provided while helping neighbours in their greatest time of need,” said Mayor Victor Cumming.

“We have seen an immense outpouring of kindness and generosity, all while folks have been working very long hours, helping to navigate complex situations. On behalf of the City of Vernon, I’d like to thank each and every person who has been part of this emergency response. This has been a difficult time for many people and our volunteers have made a big and positive difference in many lives.”

Since Thursday (Aug. 17), Vernon has been welcoming and assisting residents from neighbouring communities who have been evacuated due to wildfire. As the situation has evolved, the local Reception Centre has received and registered more than 500 evacuees.

Most residents who have registered in Vernon have come from the areas of West Kelowna, Westbank First Nation, Westside Road, Kelowna and Lake Country; however some residents have also travelled to Vernon from the Shuswap near the Bush Creek and Adams Lake fire.

Mayor Cumming also thanked the numerous organization who have chipped in for support.

“Thanks to the pet care provided by the SPCA, food support for volunteers by the Salvation Army, evacuee support by BC Services, First Aid by St. John Ambulance, and Disaster Psychosocial Services by volunteers with the Provincial Health Services Authority.”

“Our thoughts and prayers are with every single person, family, business, organization, and community who has been impacted by these devastating wildfires,” Cumming said. “Vernon is – and will continue to be - here to support you as best as possible, as we all face the continued impact of these events.”

READ MORE: 500 firefighters battling devastating Kelowna blazes; conditions turning corner

READ MORE: Vernon Helps: Where to go for evacuees and animals


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Bowen Assman

About the Author: Bowen Assman

I joined The Morning Star team in January 2023 as a reporter. Before that, I spent 10 months covering sports in Kelowna.
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