Samaritan's Purse helping Ottawa flood victims

May 21, 2019 • Canada
A Samaritan's Purse disaster relief unit.
A Samaritan's Purse disaster relief unit.

Calgary-based organization Samaritan’s Purse Canada is in Ottawa to help clean up flood-damaged homes.

The agency has deployed one of its Ontario-based disaster relief units to the capital so staff can meet with homeowners and train volunteers. The relief unit is a tractor-trailer outfitted with disaster recovery equipment such as generators, pumps, hand tools and safety gear. The unit also doubles as a volunteer co-ordination centre.

The City of Ottawa has been in a state of emergency since April 25, after heavy rainfall and a large snow melt caused the Ottawa River to reach a record-breaking level. Hundreds of homes have been damaged as a result, Samaritan’s Purse said.

Frank King, news media relations manager with Samaritan’s Purse Canada, said the disaster relief unit arrived in Ottawa earlier this week. The cleanup work with volunteers is expected to start this weekend.

Samaritan’s Purse has three other disaster relief units: two stationed in Calgary and one in New Brunswick, where the organization is helping flood victims.

This is the third time the agency has responded following disasters in the Ottawa area in the past three years, after flooding in 2017 and tornadoes in 2018.