FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 11, 2023
Greenview Stands Resilient in the Face of Unprecedented Wildfires, Launches ‘Greenview Gives Thanks’ Campaign
Valleyview, Alberta — May 5, 2023, marked the beginning of a disaster that will not soon be forgotten. Unprecedented wildfires, fuelled by extremely dry conditions and high wind speeds, ignited across our borders, threatening towns and communities throughout Greenview.
The communities of Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation, Valleyview, Little Smoky, Fox Creek, Grovedale, and Sweathouse faced significant risks as multiple large uncontrolled wildfires spread rapidly.
At the onset, the wildfires quickly outgrew the manpower and resources available to Alberta Forestry, challenging Alberta Wildfire’s capability to engage all the wildfires across the province. However, through collective effort and support, Greenview’s Emergency Operations Centre assisted in the response for all levels of the incident with the help of partners such as Alberta Wildfire, Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation, RCMP, and Alberta Emergency Management Agency (AEMA).
Reeve Tyler Olsen acknowledged the collective effort, saying, “We are extremely grateful for the extraordinary work of our volunteer firefighters, forestry’s local and international firefighting contingents, our emergency social services and the entire community who rallied against the fires.”
Wayne Brown, Director of Emergency Management, commented on the situation, “It was rough going at first given the size and magnitude of these fires; however, together with our partnered agencies, we looked after those displaced and supported forestry’s firefighting operations with our volunteer firefighters.” He added, “I simply can’t thank those involved enough, total team effort.”
Greenview Emergency Social Services (ESS) acted swiftly to establish a Reception Centre on May 5. The Centre was instrumental in registering evacuees, providing essential services, and arranging temporary lodging at Hillside Jr./Sr. High School, later moved to Valleyview Alliance Church. The Infrastructure & Engineering Department played a crucial role, ensuring security at checkpoints and facilitating the construction of critical fireguards.
In a time of crisis, the Greenview community displayed exceptional resilience and unity. “Not to be overshadowed by the devastation is the sense of community and significant resources that stepped up to assist not only Greenview but also many areas of Alberta,” Olsen added.
In a show of gratitude, Greenview is launching the ‘Greenview Gives Thanks’ campaign, an Online Recognition Wall and Social Media Campaign, to honour the commitment and efforts of all those who contributed. Community members and residents can submit photos, stories, and messages of gratitude through these platforms, serving as a digital tribute.
Greenview extends its heartfelt thanks to firefighters, first responders, emergency personnel, essential workers, volunteers, and community members. Their unwavering commitment and tireless efforts have shown that unity, collaboration, and determination can overcome even the most devastating disasters.
For more information on how to participate in ‘Greenview Gives Thanks,’ please visit www.engagegreenview.ca.
Media inquiries may be directed to:
Manager, Communications and Marketing
Download a full copy of the Media Release here.