The raging Fort McMurray wildfire continues to burn, and residents of all stripes, including entire families, are fleeing the city. But where are they headed? What if they have no relatives in the vicinity and nowhere to stay?
All of Fort McMurray is under a mandatory evacuation order, and tens of thousands of residents of the northern Alberta community have been forced to leave.
LIVE UPDATES: Fort McMurray wildfire
As of late Tuesday evening, most of the hotels in the area had been booked (vacancies and information can be found here) leaving folks stranded and looking for a place to stay. One only needs to turn to social media to witness an incredible outpouring of support from Canadians.
In countless heartwarming gestures, hundreds of people from across the Prairies have begun opening their doors to displaced Fort McMurray residents. Aside from evacuation centres and Northlands (which is offering food, beverages and shelter), individual people and businesses have been taking people in.
This woman, Rebecca Ingram, offered up her gym sight unseen to anyone who needed help.
Hashtag #ymmhelps has popped up on Twitter as a valuable source, too, letting fire evacuees know where there can find a place to stay. There is even a dedicated account (@YMMhelp) for those searching.
A Sikh temple offered up spare bedrooms and suites to those who needed shelter.
This guy was even willing to have someone sleep in his small condo.
There are literally too many offers of help out there to count.
People have even volunteered to house pets and livestock.
If you know someone looking for assistance, there is a closed Facebook group — meaning you have to request to sign up — called YMM Helping Others that’s become a valuable resource. Another Facebook group named Fort McMurray Everything Goes is providing gas for those who are stranded.
If you would like to help the people of Fort McMurray, text REDCROSS to 30333 to make a $5 donation or visit redcross.ca to make a donation online. The Red Cross is only accepting money at this point in time. Please do not offer second-hand clothing or other items.
With files from Global News’ Caley Ramsey