As community council chair of the Prince George branch of the B.C. SPCA, I would like to thank those who supported the Kamloops branch during May’s City Challenge event and congratulate both Kamloops and Prince George for reaching and exceeding their fundraising targets.
The combined response of the two communities raised a total of more than $60,000, which will benefit animals in both our cities. The true winners of this friendly challenge were the animals.
It is extremely gratifying to us in Prince George that in the wake of a human tragedy in the days prior to the start of the B.C. SPCA challenge, and the significant financial and emotional burden that involved, residents still stepped forward to also support animals in need.
As you know, Prince George was devastated on April 23 when an explosion ripped through the Lakeland sawmill in the city, resulting in the death of two people and life-altering injuries to many more.
Within days, the people of B.C.’s Volunteer Capital created the Lakeland Fire Assistance Fund through the Prince George Community Foundation. Virtually all Prince George fundraising efforts turned away from their normal goals, instead focusing on gathering donations and raising funds for the families of workers who died, were injured, or who suddenly found themselves without jobs.
Out of respect and support for this effort, we not only cancelled several of our key City Challenge events, but also respected that the priority of our community’s generosity was for the human tragedy we faced.
I am extremely proud to report that the Lakeland Fire Assistance Fund is approaching $500,000. I am also proud of my fellow citizens who still managed to find it within their hearts to support the efforts of the Prince George branch of the B.C. SPCA in surpassing our fundraising goals during the City Challenge.
The generosity and dedication of the people of Prince George and Kamloops to help those in need – two-legged or four – never ceases to amaze me.
BC SPCA Community Council Chair, Prince George