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    21 Ways Albertans Are Proving They're Strong In The Face Of Disaster


    In 2013 when floods tore through their province, the good people of Alberta showed the rest of Canada their resilience.

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    John Gibson / Getty Images

    Now faced with a new disaster in Fort McMurray we're reminded once again: Alberta is strong as hell.

    Jason Franson / THE CANADIAN PRESS

    1. More than 80,000 people had to flee Fort McMurray, driving through apocalyptic scenes like this. It was terrifying. It was scorching. But they did it.

    Holly Ayearst / THE CANADIAN PRESS

    2. With traffic moving slowly and gas running low, people had to abandon their cars on the side of the road to escape the smoke and flames. But they weren't left to fend for themselves โ€” many were quickly picked up by anyone who had space.

    Brian Langton / THE CANADIAN PRESS

    3. As the flames threatened Northern Lights Regional Health Centre, doctors, nurses, and other hospital staff put their patients first and managed to get every last one to safety.

    #ymm Hospital. #ymmfire @ctvedmonton

    4. Others organized "spontaneous Alberta rescue convoys" to deliver food, gas, and water to those still stranded along Highway 63.

    Jason Franson / THE CANADIAN PRESS

    5. Seriously, people are just loading up their cars with supplies and driving to where they're needed.

    6. Because all they want to do is help.

    7. With thousands of people needing a place to stay, the towns and First Nations surrounding Fort McMurray opened their doors.


    According to the National Post, Anzac, Alberta, a town of just 718, took in "as many 8,000 people at the peak of the evacuation."

    When Anzac was later evacuated, more communities still stepped up to take in the wave of people seeking shelter.

    8. Then there's all the people ready and willing to welcome evacuees into their homes using the hashtag #ymmhelps.


    9. Among all those thousands of people are all their pets, as well. But Alberta it taking care of them, too, whether by providing hydration along the road...

    10. Or by giving them a safe place to stay.

    Greg Halinda / THE CANADIAN PRESS

    This is Dale Kossey with his three dogs Elmo, Gizmo, and Lacey resting at an evacuation centre in Anzac.

    11. Or by recusing pets that had to be left behind. An Imgur user said he broke into a home in the evacuation zone, at the owner's request, to save these three cats.

    12. Airbnb has also enacted their disaster response, which means service fees have been waived and those with space can list accommodations for $0 until May 21.

    For those in need of a longer-term stay, Alberta housing company Mainstreet Equity Corp. is offering three months of free rent for those in need.

    13. Other businesses are making sure no evacuee has to worry about getting a warm meal.

    Good on @OriginalJoes, paying for #YMMFire victims' food and drinks in #YEG. Alberta rules. #YMMHelps

    14. Over at Edmonton Emergency Relief Services, the organization has been overwhelmed with donations and people stepping up to volunteer their time.

    All 3 phone lines ringing off hook. They don't need ANY more volunteers today; tomorrow maybe! #ymmhelps #ymmfire

    15. Across the province, people have been rushing to stores to get basic necessities like toothpaste and soap for people they've never even met.

    16. Even the newest Albertans are ready to pitch in. A callout for donations on a Facebook group for Syrian refugees in Calgary has now been shared hundreds of times.

    Facebook / Via Facebook: YYCSYR

    "Canadians have provided us with everything and now we have a duty."

    17. Meanwhile, firefighters have come in from surrounding areas, working around the clock to fight back the flames and help people get to safety.

    Our crew taking their first rest since leaving #shpk yesterday evening. #ymmfire

    18. But even all that is just a small slice of the incredible outpouring of support for those affected by the fires.

    19. When things turn from bad to worse, Albertans don't back down.

    20. And they take care of their own.

    21. Because Albertans are strong as hell.

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