Canadian Red Cross opening warming shelter to support residents from First Nations without power

Topics: Regions, National, Manitoba, Winnipeg, Topics, Emergencies and Disasters in Canada, Indigenous Communities
Jason Small | October 15, 2019

(WINNIPEG, Oct. 13, 2019) – The Canadian Red Cross is opening a warming shelter for individuals from up to 11 First Nations in Manitoba that are currently without hydro power due to the recent major snowstorm.
The warming shelter will be at the RBC Convention Centre in downtown Winnipeg and will only be open to individuals who register with the Canadian Red Cross at the registration centre, which is at a different location, before going to the warming shelter.
The response is part of an agreement between the Canadian Red Cross and the federal government to provide disaster assistance to First Nations in Manitoba. The decision to evacuate the communities was made by the leadership of the First Nations in consultation with the federal government.
Several First Nations have declared a state of emergency because their communities have been without power for 48 or more hours. Evacuees are coming out of their communities via their own vehicles. The Canadian Red Cross is encouraging individuals in the affected communities to stay in their home communities, unless dictated by their leadership.
The Canadian Red Cross is inviting media to see the warming shelter as it is being set up before evacuated individuals begin to arrive. Media cannot access the shelter once those individuals begin to arrive.
Shelters are being required because of the potential number of evacuees and because of a lack of available hotel rooms in the city. It is expected that most people who are leaving their communities will be staying with friends and family until power is restored. The shelter is for those evacuated people who need a place to go.
The Canadian Red Cross has a team of trained volunteers and staff who have the skills and resources to support evacuees in communities throughout Manitoba, however, we always need more caring and dedicated individuals who want to help people in need. Anyone who wants to volunteer to help with disasters can email or call 1-844-818-2155.
Since Red Cross disaster assistance to First Nations is supported by the federal government, the expenses for the response are covered. Anyone wishing to make a donation to help the Red Cross prepare to assist Manitobans impacted by future disasters can go to or call 1-800-418-1111.
The Red Cross does not accept donations of any items as it does not have the capacity and resources to handle and store goods. Anyone looking to donate items is asked to reach out to community groups in their area and not to take them to the shelter.
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