A wildfire burns in the mountains north of Lytton, B.C., on Thursday, July 1, 2021. The B.C. government and Red Cross are stepping up to help provide housing for those who lost their homes in wildfires last summer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

A wildfire burns in the mountains north of Lytton, B.C., on Thursday, July 1, 2021. The B.C. government and Red Cross are stepping up to help provide housing for those who lost their homes in wildfires last summer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. and Canadian Red Cross to give housing support to those affected by wildfires

THE CANADIAN PRESS

VICTORIA — The B.C. government says it is teaming up with the Canadian Red Cross to provide housing help to those who were affected by wildfires this year.

A Sunday news release from the public safety ministry says the province will provide eligible households $1,300 per month starting in December while they move to long-term housing.

It says the financial help will meet temporary housing needs of eligible households that been receiving short-term accommodation support since July.

The release says the Canadian Red Cross is also helping with housing repair, reconstruction and cleanup of properties.

The province’s 2021 wildfire season saw the destruction of the village of Lytton and homes levelled in several other Interior regions, but the BC Wildfire Service says it was not the worst season on record.

A 2021 wildfire summary says about $565 million was spent in the “tremendously challenging” period between April 1 and Sept. 30, when 1,610 wildfires charred 8,682 square kilometres, mainly in southern and southeastern B.C.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 7, 2021.