Friendship centres offer support and a taste of home for evacuated Indigenous residents from N.W.T.

By Shari Narine  Local Journalism Initiative Reporter Friendship centres “always seem to be one of those main points of contact, especially for our Indigenous communities that are going through these evacuations,” said Sheila Moerkoert of the Grande Prairie Friendship Centre. With more than 200 wildfires raging in the Northwest Territories, the territorial government declared a Territorial State of Emergency Aug. 15. With evacuation notices, alerts and orders issued, residents started coming south to Alberta. On Wednesday, the capital city of Yellowknife and the neighbouring First Nations communities of Ndilo and Dettah were ordered to leave by noon Friday. That numbers approximately 22,000 residents. On Aug. 14, Kat?’odeeche First Nation declared a full evacuation with residents heading to Hay River and Yellowknife. That same day Hay River was forced to evacuate…

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