How BC Residents Helped Each Other During the Flood Crisis


When Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley were hit by landslides and floods more than a week ago, many were evacuated, trapped, and desperate.

When tragedy and horror had a devastating effect, indigenous communities squeezed people from Chilliwack’s Squiar Nation through Fraser Valley to Bowser Nation and suddenly behind a wall of mud and water. I acted to find and help.

Margaret Hendrickson of Boston Bar First Nations has been supporting the distribution of food and supplies and running the town’s soup kitchen since the slide. And when the deadlocked people learned help, they were willing to accept it, Hendrickson said.

Epoch Times Photo
The aerial photograph shows a flooded farm along the Trans Canada Highway in Abbotsford, British Columbia, November 22, 2021. (Canadian Press / Darryl Dyck)

“There were some young girls stuck, three of them,” she said. “They stayed two nights in the car before they realized we were here. We put them in one of our volunteer homes. Someone else with the family I took the two kids. People were just saying, we had space and the motel was full. “

In the south of Hope, where hundreds were trapped between two landslides for four days, people from Skawalook First Nations and Chawasir First Nations brought food to a local gymnasium. disaster.

Chawathil chief Rhoda Peters told The Epoch Times that he recognized the need for the locals to offer. The family emptied the freezer to provide food, the locals brought blankets and bedding, and one resident brought her electric scooter and waited for the children to go home. I did something fun while I was there.

“Working together, our members didn’t hesitate to step up,” she said. “We knew people were in trouble, and when something happened in our community, we don’t just wait. We really want to help people. “

Trapped in the Hope area from November 14th to 18th, Lone Marchilddon, a resident of Cloverdale, British Columbia, witnessed generosity and survived his love for food, coffee, and the community provided.

“They were running away from home with supplies,” said Mercyledon. “They gave everything they had.”

Peters and Mercy Don, although simple, separated from the wider society, emphasized a common humanity in which desperate situations can breed.

“Our members stayed and talked to the people. They mixed with the people who were there and gave them a place to relax,” Peters said. “The kids were playing together and some of the people who got stuck helped with various chores. We worked together.”

On the other side of the northern landslide, Dana Andrews, an emergency liaison with Shxw’ōwhámél First Nation, reiterated the same story that trapped people and communities began to provide assistance. There were no questions.

“I didn’t know their name,” Andrews said. “I just asked them if they were hungry and if they wanted food, because here we are embracing each other.”

Their own communities were at risk of flooding while Andrews and others were busy helping and feeding people. Members of the Canadian Army now want to build barriers to mitigate another potential problem.

“Everyone took action”

Further south of Abbotsford and Chilliwack, the crisis unfolds on a variety of scales, causing massive floods that threaten millions of birds and thousands of cattle that provide most of the state’s poultry and dairy supply. bottom. When Abbotsford Mayor Henry Braun called for the evacuation of Sumas Prairie on November 16, he begged farmers to think about their lives first and later deal with the aftermath of the animals.

Epoch Times Photo
On November 16, 2021, after a storm struck an area of ​​British Columbia, cattle stranded in a flooded barn were rescued by people by boat and Sea-Doo. (Reuters / Jennifer Gautier)

However, while BC poultry and dairy farmers have previously experienced emergencies and floods can be catastrophic, farmers and their business networks have been able to rely on their rescue and rescue efforts. We have worked hard to keep the industry alive.

Dairy farmer and chair Holger Schwitchtemberg Members of the BC Dairy Farmers Association said that some of his fellow farmers had to sadly watch over the work of their lives being washed away. But despite the harsh predictions that the entire industry will collapse, people have once again come together to help each other.

With the help of heavy equipment suppliers, feed trucks, and people with animal trailers and additional capacity farms, everyone involved in dairy production joins forces to save the farm, and more importantly, the cows. I did.

“What do people do when bad things happen? We roll up our sleeves and see what we can do for the farmers. That was the attitude,” Schwichtenberg said. Told the Epoch Times.

“How many cows can I have? I can take 30 and my neighbor 70, and literally thousands of animals have been separated from the farm and arrived at Chiliwak and Agashizu.”

Schwitchtenberg said the situation was nothing more than a “disaster” and many families were overwhelmed by the loss of farms and animals, but the community is gathering for as much help as possible.

“It’s a quick reaction, and there aren’t many questions asking how to do this. Everyone took action, including community support, volunteering, food, farms, trucks, trailers, etc. It’s noteworthy. Deserves. “

After the highway was closed and the production chain was disrupted, the BC Milk Marketing Commission asked farmers to destroy the product because the truck arrived at the farm and was unable to receive the goods. However, a week after the statement was released, the industry recovered to about 80% of milk production compared to before the flood.

Like dairy farms, state poultry farmers faced devastation. The entire industry responded similarly and acted swiftly to regain and recover as many birds and their production as possible.

Reynickel, a poultry farmer who is a member of the BC Chicken Marketing Board, said everyone worked together to protect the threatened chicken farm and rescue the chickens.

“When you get in there, that is, it’s visually daunting, and it’s almost apocalyptic when it looks like a lake all the time,” Nickel told The Epoch Times.

“But nevertheless, we had the farmers bring in a much larger tractor from the mission. We got people to help get water, take animals out, and bring in supplies. The farmers did not leave any animals. They continue to work with it, help each other, are resilient and expect very positive results. “

While only a handful of farms were beyond rescue, Nickel took a dramatic situation, did not significantly impact food supply, and produced results that British Columbia families could still keep turkeys. They praised a network of successful companies, farmers and industry players at their table this Christmas.

“I was surprised by some stories,” he said. “My fellow producers in the area are shaving their ass, and … I was very impressed that many of them were heroes in this.”

Jeff Sandes