Amanda Spurr is quick to tears when she talks about the B.C. wildfires.
The 100 Mile House native who has been living in Maple Ridge since February while attending school is worried about her family.
Her mother and father, sister and her children, and her grandparents have all been evacuated. Between all of her family, five or six different homes have been abandoned.
“It’s definitely been pretty hard,” said the 20-year-old, fighting back tears. “I was born and raised there, so it’s pretty hard to see what’s happening to my home town,” Spurr said. “I can’t go on Facebook or anything because I just cry.”
Her father is working in Fort St. John, her stepmother has made it to the Lower Mainland and the rest of her family are on their way to Merritt to stay with family there.
“Seeing everybody just so scared. Friends have lost their homes and my family won’t know if their homes are still standing.
“It’s just hard. The memories,” continued Spurr adding a lot of people she knows have been routed to Prince George, and they are staying in travel trailers, tents and even cars.
“It’s extremely smokey there, so it’s hard to breathe,” she said.
Seeing how hard Spurr is taking news of the wildfires, her cousin’s daughters wanted to help.
They have been joined by their friends from the neighbourhood in setting up a lemonade stand to raise money for Spurr’s family and the Red Cross.
Rae-Lynn Higham, 7, Elizabeth Fiorante, 12, Cheyenne Higham, 10, Madalyn Howe, 10, and her sister Rebecca, 5, have been selling the lemonade at the cormer of 118th Avenue and 239th Street since Sunday.
By Monday evening, they raised a total of $1,010.80.
They were set up for only three hours on Sunday and raised $112.25.
More than 100 people have stopped by over the two days.
One lady donated $300 and brought Spurr to tears.
“I have no words. The fact that they are little kids and they want to help means so much.
“So many people have stopped,” said Spurr.
The girls are planning to sell lemonade until the end of the week.
They generally set the stand up at 12:30 p.m.
Sonya Howe, Spurr’s cousin, said she couldn’t even get the girls in for bed Monday evening.
They were out until 8:30 p.m. and begging to stay out later.
“They are just gung ho,” said Howe laughing.
“It’s crazy how much support has come in,” she said.
To donate directly to the Red Cross call 1-800-418-1111 or go to redcross.ca.