Support Organizations

Local authorities such as municipalities and regional districts provide emergency social services, often through a network of trained volunteers.

In addition to the support of community volunteers, the Emergency Social Services (ESS) Office has agreements with the following organizations to provide additional resources to communities in major emergencies.


ESS Support Organizations

Primary Response Roles

BC Housing (BCH)

  • Assisting local authorities to locate and secure group lodging for residents and disaster support workers.
  • Coordinating emergency lodging supplies – cots, blankets, etc. – throughout the province.
  • Assisting Emergency staff and volunteers to manage group emergency lodging and assess disaster damage.
  • Assists local authorities in preparing for emergencies or major disasters by offering courses through the Rapid Damage Assessment Program.


Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation Canada (Tzu Chi)


  • Volunteers, translation services, personal services, goods vouchers.

Canadian Red Cross Society (CRCS)


  • Community ESS Support (family reunification, group lodging, surge capacity.
  • Prepositioned goods (cots, blankets, clean up kits, teddy bears).
  • Call Centre – public information, family reunification, client call-back.
  • Central Registry and Information Bureau (CRIB) management.


Justice Institute of BC (JIBC)

  • Provide JIBC Instructors to train convergent volunteers.

St. John Ambulance (SJA)

  • First Aid services in ESS Facilities.

The Salvation Army (TSA)

  • Psychosocial aspects (Meet & Greet and Emotional Support).
  • Mass Feeding.
  • Community ESS support (clothing, furniture, food).


Disaster Psychosocial Program (DPS)


  • Psychosocial support to communities and emergency response workers.