The McDougall Creek Wildfire
With the state of emergency in Kelowna and campus evacuation issued on Friday for the Kelowna area, we urge our membership to take the steps necessary to protect yourself and your families. Your well-being is paramount and the UBCFA is here to assist you in this difficult time.
While the full impacts of the McDougall Creek Wildfire are still unknown, we encourage you to reach out to the Faculty Association with any questions or concerns regarding your work and responsibilities during this time. We can be reached at: [email protected].
In particular, if you are evacuated or require time away from work to address your needs, please notify your Head of Department and reach out to us for assistance.
Evacuees can register online at ess.gov.bc.ca or at the following emergency reception centres:
- The Salvation Army at 1480 Sutherland Dr., Kelowna
- Royal LePage Place at 2760 Cameron Rd., West Kelowna
- Kal Tire Place at 3445 43rd Ave., Vernon
We also encourage you to access your Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) benefits. If you log in to the EFAP website through UBC Lifeworks, they have the following resources that you can access:
- Professional Counselling Services: 24/7/365 counselling services are available for you and your family. If you are stressed out, overwhelmed, or feeling low, we encourage you to access EFAP’s counselling services by phoning them at 1-866-424-0770. Counselling is available in person, over the phone, and online.
- Financial Support: EFAP also offers many other services such as stress & health help, finance help, and other resources to support elders and children. You can view the list of resources available to you by visiting the UBC HR website.
- Natural Disasters Toolkit: Familiarizing yourself with EFAP’s natural disasters toolkit during this time may also provide some assistance.
Other supports include:
- Alerts and Evacuations: Stay informed about the fire’s progression, evacuation orders, and other important information by visiting the Central Okanagan Emergency Operations website. The site also includes instructions for evacuees’ support.
- BC Government Support: The BC Government typically provides support for individuals. Details can be found on the government website. Please note that, currently, the McDougall Creek wildfire has not yet been added as an event eligible for Disaster Financial Assistance (DFA). The government may add it to the DFA event list in the future.
- Canadian Red Cross: The Canadian Red Cross provides support to eligible households. Details can be found on the Canadian Red Cross website. Please note that, currently, the 2023 BC wildfires have not yet been added to the list of current emergency responses. The Canadian Red Cross may add it to the list in the future.
- BC Wildfire Services: A comprehensive list and interactive map of the state of active wildfires in the province. This is also available as an APP.
- FireSmoke.ca: A high resolution, interactive forecast of hourly, daily average and maximum concentrations of PM2.5 smoke particles at ground level from wildfires.
Our thoughts are with all of you as this emergency develops. Please stay vigilant, follow safety guidelines, and take care of yourselves.