Early Morning Fire within Shoal Lake #40 – Public Notice/Media Release

Photo of the Six-plex apartment building in Shoal Lake #40 on fire just before dawn.

Early morning fire within shoal lake #40

In the early morning of Feb 11, 2023, a fire destroyed a 6-unit apartment complex in Shoal Lake #40.

At 5:05am the police were called about a fire in the community of Shoal Lake #40. The Shoal Lake #40 Mobile Crisis Response Team Anishinabe Mikinaa (James Mandamin, Shoal Lake #40 and Jeffery Thompson Shoal Lake #39) accessed each unit and was able to wake everyone up and get them out safely.
“It was the quick actions of James and Jeff, that saved the lives of community members. They are true heroes, and we are extremely grateful and happy they were there and took the steps that they did”, said Chief Kevin Redsky.
By the time Richer fire station arrived on scene, the entire building had gone up in flames and burnt to the ground. Thankfully, no one was seriously injured but a couple of community members were treated for minor injuries.
Shoal Lake #40 Chief and Council, programs staff and Kenora Chiefs Advisory have been working tirelessly to provide supports and relocate the 30 community members displaced to hotels in Winnipeg. This is a short-term solution, until we can find short term housing in the community, and ultimately re-build.
The building was valued at 1.5 million dollars and a huge loss for the community. The 6 unit was a home for 30 community members, many children, who now have to find alternative options. This will be a challenge because of the chronic shortage of housing that exists within Shoal Lake #40. The lack of housing has resulted in other factors such as overcrowded homes, and families having to live in condemned homes until more housing can become available.
We are grateful for the support of our programs staff, and will continue to work to ensure our members are safe and have the supports needed until a long-term solution is developed.
The cause of the fire is unknown at this time but arson is not suspected, and further investigation will take place.
We are asking for donations to help our families, who have lost everything in the fire. All funds raised will be used to replace all personal/home items lost in the fire, and support with food and bills during this time.
You can make a donation directly to the GoFundMe page:
Additionally, Any Cash and In-Hand donations may be left with Cathy Green. Her phone number is: (204) 869-8910
Household items can be dropped off at the Band Office gym. Clothes, food, anything helps.
Mail-in donations can be sent to:
Box 6, Kejick Post Office
Shoal Lake, Ontario P0X 1E0
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