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Sask. government to match donations to wildfire relief fund for Burstall area

About 770 cattle were lost to wildfires fires in southwest Saskatchewan, along with structures and 36,000 hectares of land.
About 770 cattle were lost to wildfires fires in southwest Saskatchewan, along with structures and 36,000 hectares of land. File / Global News

The Saskatchewan government pledged to match up to $100,000 in donations to a relief fund in support of farmers and ranchers impacted by grass fires last month.

Strong wind caused fast-moving wildfires to consume land near the communities of Burstall, Tompkins and Leader on Oct. 17.

READ MORE: SSGA sets up relief fund to help ranchers impacted by wildfires

The Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association (SSGA) established a relief fund, receiving about $65,000 in cash donations as of Thursday.

Including in-kind donations, the effort has collected an estimated $250,000.

“Under these circumstances and following this unprecedented event, our government believes contributing financially to this fund is the best, most flexible and fastest way to help affected farm families in the region,” Government Relations Minister Larry Doke said in a news release.

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Producers lost an estimated 770 cattle and 36,000 hectares of land, including crop and pasture land. Several fences, outbuildings and other structures were also damaged or destroyed.

“We sincerely appreciate the provincial government for what they’re doing today and thank them for finding an innovative way to help,” SSGA president Shane Jahnke said in the release.

READ MORE: Saskatchewan dealing with aftermath of wildfires and wind

During Canadian Western Agribition from Nov. 20 to Nov. 25 in Regina, the SSGA will be accpeting donations at its trade show booth.

Donations are accepted here or by phone at 306-757-8523.