Some Thoughts on a Community Tragedy

The explosion at the Babine Forest Products mill outside of Burns Lake last Friday evening has impacted this community in a devastating way. You can read the news articles for yourself, but I thought I would weigh in with my perspective here.

As a new member of this community, I haven’t been sure how I should feel about or respond to this tragic event. I don’t know anyone personally who worked at the mill and the explosion hasn’t changed my own personal life, so I almost feel like I am not allowed to be affected by it. Yet, I’ve had a hard time sleeping and thoughts of those whose lives have been turned upside down are never far from my mind.

My job at the college puts me in a unique position. Many of our clients have family members now without a job, and some have even lost relatives. As I talked with a grieving young woman yesterday, my heart broke for her. I watch these families, many who already don’t have enough money or support, and I don’t know what is going to happen to them. It’s my job to provide support, but all I can do right now is be someone to listen.

The community is still very much in shock, barely able to grasp what has happened, let alone comprehend the deep implications that the loss of the mill is going to have. When those implications start to become apparent, this community is going to need all sorts of help. If you feel like you want to do something, you can donate to the Lakes District Tragedy Relief Fund here.

Please keep my community in your prayers,


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