Highway 1 is pictured during a fly over the flood damage in Abbotsford, B.C., Tuesday, November 23, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

Highway 1 is pictured during a fly over the flood damage in Abbotsford, B.C., Tuesday, November 23, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

Flood-affected Abbotsford residents asked to pen heartfelt letters about their struggles

Many Sumas Prairie area residents are still not back home six months after devastating flooding

Anyone affected by the November floods in Abbotsford is being asked to pen a handwritten letter of their experience.

The letter-writing campaign is hoped to stir bureaucrats into action, and find funding for those still struggling to get their lives and livelihoods back to normal after the historic flood event in the Sumas Prairie area.

The appeal for the letters was put out Friday by Jimi Meier and Hallie Jacobs, two women who have been helping with disaster assistance in their neighbourhood through their Facebook group, Helping Sumas Prairie Farmers – Flood Support. They have collected more than $75,000 in donations for their neighbours through their efforts and are hoping to effect even more change through this campaign.

“Handwritten just makes it very personal,” Meier wrote. “It’s not just a number…it was a person who took the time to share their story. And your story is so important”

They are planning to gather up all the letters and take them to Abbotsford Mayor Henry Braun, who they hope will take the letters when meeting with other officials regarding the floods.

She said typed letters are alright, for those who can’t write them out. The letters can be dropped off at any of the three locations they’ve set up so far. Those are Gateway Church (on select days), Birchwood Dairy and the Yarrow Hub. They can also be emailed to fraservalleyfloodrelief@gmail.com.

“Imagine showing up with over 3,000 letters,” Meier said. “We want to make this personal for them. Every letter is a person, family, farm, house …

We are looking for your flood experience. Share only what you are comfortable with.”

She said people could include things like how the flood affected you personally or financially, and what help you have or haven’t received.

It has been six months since the flooding now, and many in the affected area have reported they have not been given financial assistance, or not enough to make their homes livable. Many are still not back home, or are living on their property in trailers.

The deadline to submit your letter is June 3.

READ MORE: Abbotsford Facebook group collects more than $75K in donations for flood victims


@CHWKcommunity
jessica.peters@abbynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

abbotsfordBC FloodNewsPoliticsSevere weather