British Columbians donate $384,000 to help Fort McMurray


VANCOUVER — British Columbians have shown their compassion and kindness for the residents of Fort McMurray by donating $384,089 through BC Liquor Stores.

The funds, which were collected in stores throughout the province between May 3 and May 29, continue to help the Red Cross provide emergency relief and assistance to Fort McMurray residents, as thousands struggle to recover and rebuild in the face of devastating wildfires in the area.

Although the fire has spread into Saskatchewan and now covers almost 580,000 hectares, the wildfire is not believed to be an imminent threat to the community. According to the Alberta government, a voluntary, phased re-entry for residents is scheduled to begin today, based on wildfire conditions and safety.

Although BC Liquor Stores' Red Cross campaign has ended, British Columbians interested in donating to the Canadian Red Cross can continue to do so by calling 1 800 418-1111 toll-free, or by visiting the online donation form:

Coralee Oakes, Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction and Minister Responsible
for the Liquor Distribution Branch —

"British Columbians—and Canadians across the country—have rallied behind the residents of Fort McMurray during this incredibly difficult time. We hope these funds will go a long way in helping residents recover and rebuild in the city they love."

Blain Lawson, general manager and CEO, BC Liquor Distribution Branch —
"I'm astounded by the incredible generosity of British Columbians towards our neighbours in Alberta. This is by far the largest amount BC Liquor Stores has raised for the Red Cross since our partnership with them began in 2003. BC Liquor Stores would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to all the customers and employees who supported this campaign."

Kimberley Nemrava, vice president, Canadian Red Cross B.C. & Yukon —
"This is the largest fire-related evacuation in Alberta's history. The continued generosity of BC Liquor Stores and its customers demonstrates our shared commitment to helping people prepare for—and also to recover from—disasters and emergencies in what's sometimes the toughest times of their lives."


Quick facts:

  • BC Liquor Stores' customers and employees have supported Red Cross disaster relief for humanitarian crises at home and abroad since 2003, when stores first collecteddonations to support victims affected by catastrophic wildfires raging in British Columbia.
  • Since then, more than $2.5 million has been raised for Red Cross humanitarian crises in Nepal, Haiti, Pakistan, Japan, Africa and Syria, as well as for disaster relief efforts in New Orleans and Alberta.
  • In 2013, BC Liquor Stores collected more than $170,000 for Alberta Flood Relief.

For a photo of the cheque presentation, please go to:
For a higher resolution photo, please contact the Liquor Distribution Branch.


Media Contact:

Viola Kaminski
BC Liquor Distribution Branch
604 252-3029