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Donations needed for influx of families displaced by wildfires


Multiple charitable organizations in Calgary are urging residents to help with increasing demand for basic goods as the region sees more women and families in need displaced by wildfires raging in British Columbia's interior and Northwest Territories.

Calgary’s Women in Need Society (WINS) is looking for donations of goods, items like clothing, hygiene products and items for children.

WINS is also seeking cash donations, or volunteers to come forward.

United Way of Calgary and area is partnering with the organization in this cause.

"I'm hoping Calgarians rise to the occasion they can donate at any WINS store or at our donation centre, which is very handy (because) you don't have to take it to the hotels. They aren't equipped to take this product," said Karen Ramchuk, president and CEO of WINS.

WINS is also supporting the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) because of the established distribution network.

"Donate cash if you can, donate product if you can, shop our stores, knowing the thrift store you are supporting where your dollars are going, then volunteer your time," added Ramchuk.


An estimated 68 per cent of the population of the Northwest Territories is under an evacuation order due to multiple wildfires, with a large proportion headed to Alberta.

The City of Calgary estimates more than 2,700 N.W.T evacuees are in Calgary, staying in 48 different hotels.

"I guess this is where we going to be for a while. They're saying two weeks but we don't know, "said Robert Sterritt, an evacuee from Yelloknife.

He says he left home on short notice, with just a small bag of belongings.

"Any donations will help. Clothes. Toiletries. Anything."

Links to help:

  • Donate funds: Monetary donations can be made both in person at any WINS store location and online through the donate funds page;
  • Donate goods: Product donations can be dropped off at the donation centre or at any of the six WINS stores located across the city;
  • Shop at WINS: When you shop at WINS thrift stores, proceeds fund community programs; and
  • Volunteer: To learn more, please visit the volunteer page.

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