Wildfire evacuees in Barriere can shop for free at this thrift store

Thrift store lends a hand

A thrift store in Barriere is hoping to ease the burden for wildfire evacuees.

Anyone in B.C. who has been displaced by fire and is in need of things like clothing and footwear is invited to stop by the Barriere Annex Thrift Shop and shop for free.

"They can take what they need as long as they have their ESS (Emergency Support Services) card," store manager Debbie Johnston tells Castanet.

Other available items include a car seat and crib, camping gear, baby clothes, blankets and bedding.

Johnston says the idea to let wildfire evacuees access the store's inventory came about after the Lytton wildfire, which destroyed the majority of the Fraser Canyon village.

Since early July, three people have taken Johnston up on her offer.

"For some of them, it's been really scary," she says. "They're terrified that they don't know if they're going to have a home to go to. The people in Barriere themselves, who have been through the fire of 2003, some are panicking."

The Barriere Annex Thrift Shop is located at 4646 Barriere Town Rd.

Wildfire evacuees can shop at the following times:

  • Tuesday and Thursday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Johnston says her team is only accepting local donations (clothing, bedding, towels) at this time, as space is limited.

For inquiries about donations or for more information, call 250-320-4088.

If you're a wildfire evacuee, you can register with Emergency Support Services on the provincial government's website.

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