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Salvation Army in Abbotsford raises $1.5 million in flood relief for Fraser Valley communities

Organization presenting cheque at Cascade Church on May 2
Ron Sestrap jingles a bell during a two-hour shift of volunteering for the Salvation Army kettle campaign in 2018. Dustin Godfrey/Abbotsford News

The Salvation Army in Abbotsford has been able to fundraise $1.5 million in flood relief for the hardest hit areas of the province.

The organization will be presenting the cheque at a flood safety demonstration at Cascade Church on May 2.

“The funding will help communities in their continued recovery efforts,” says spokesperson Mike Leland. “Some of the hardest hit communities are still dealing with a massive cleanup and restoration efforts, including some first nations communities that were completely cut off during the floods. Our goal is to help get them back to some sense of normalcy as soon as possible.”

The Salvation Army had already raised $600,000 to regions directly impacted by the November floods in 2021; that first round of charity went towards immediate relief efforts like food security, evacuation supplies and temporary shelters.

The second round of funding totalling $725,000 is going towards communities’ recovery and restoration efforts with construction, equipment and labour costs, and continued food security, according to a press release.

Notably, $500,000 has also been raised for impacted First Nation groups, who are still dealing with a massive recovery effort, the release says.

“We know this may be a small drop in the bucket,” says Leland. “But every dollar helps these communities in their recovery effort, and as an organization that serves on the front lines, we are duty-bound to support these communities, and those who call them home.”

The cheque will be presented from 9 to 10 a.m. on Monday to Mayor Henry Braun and Bob Mills, manager of First Nations Services Society.

“On behalf of Abbotsford City Council, the City of Abbotsford and our residents, I want to thank The Salvation Army for their flood relief support immediately following the November 2021 flood and now as recovery work continues,” said Braun.

“Over 300 city infrastructure sites were damaged and $100,000 to the City of Abbotsford will help us move our recovery and restoration work forward.”