Lambton County residents send cash to Fort McMurray

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A couple of  Central Lambton municipalities are lending a hand to the fire victims in Fort McMurray, Alberta and Lambton County is also sending $100,000 to help.

The community is reeling after wildfires destroyed entire neighbourhoods earlier this month. Monday, some of the large oil companies had to move their employees from their sites because the fires were close.

St. Clair Township  is sending $25,000 to help people in the fire ravaged area. Mayor Steve Arnold says the township has built a relationship with oil patch communities over the years, including Wood Buffalo, which was devastated by the flames.

“A lot of our people have worked out there, a lot of the young engineers go their start out there…We have visited there…trying to establish trade out there…and we’ve had some success so that was the reason for the donation for the community support; to say we standing with you.”

Brooke-Alvinston Council is contributing $2,500 to the recovery effort. Deputy Mayor Jim Hayter, a firefighter for the past 45 years, suggested the municipal donation. “I don’t think we should go through the county,” he said referring to Sarnia Council which delayed making a donation saying Lambton County is considering a larger donation for the federation. “It should be our own.”

Mayor Don McGugan agreed saying the region has ties with Fort McMurray. “There were people from Brooke who worked there.”

Plympton-Wyoming council is supporting local residents hosting fundraisers for the area by offering rent-free facilities. The Wyoming and Camlachie firefighters are also actively promoting an online auction to be held June 2 to raise money for fire victims.

And in Dawn-Euphemia, firefighters have decided to spend $1,000 to the Canadian Red Cross for the relief effort. Chief Dave Williams says the money will come from the fundraising breakfast and chicken dinners.

And recently, the Victoria Playhouse Petrolia donated $10,000 to the effort – the proceeds from the opening night of Scotland Sings.

Wednesday, Lambton county councillors approved a donation of $100,000 for the area.

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