When a devastating fire burned through the small village of Stewart Valley, the area’s only school and Community Centre were lost. 

Everything inside was lost to the blaze that ignited from a lightning strike back in August, leaving all of the students and staff displaced.  

The community got to work immediately with fundraising, knowing there would be gaps with the insurance coverage and needing all the help they could get to support their residents.  

Jennie Moen, an organizer for their recent charity event, said it was initially planned for October 8 but a last-minute change of plans took place due to a visit from the Roughriders. 

“We found out two and a half weeks ago that we won the Block Party by thousands of votes,” Moen said. “So, we decided just to keep our fire fundraiser and Roughrider Block Party event together.” 

She had sent in an application to host the Saskatchewan football team before the Stewart Valley school had burned down.  

While deciding to have both in the same night meant a lot of planning in a little amount of time, Moen said the evening turned out amazing. 

“The majority of the kids that went to school in Stewart Valley were at the event, so they had a blast,” Moen said. “And the teachers were there to celebrate with us. We just didn’t ask anything of them as far as setting up and those types of things, because they have a lot on their plates already.” 

Most of the students and teachers were taken in by Success School, with others going to Waldeck or Swift Current.  

Previous funding raised by Stewart Valley went towards making sure the students and teachers had what they needed to get started in the new school year.  

“Our tally for [total] money raised is around $60,000,” Moen said. “We haven’t been given a whole lot of information as far as what’s happening from an insurance side at this point.” 

A focus point now is having their Community Centre rebuilt, despite not knowing exactly how much it will cost to do so. 

"Out of a an absolute tragedy this has brought our community so close together," Moen said. "We're just determined to to fight through this and and get back to a pre-fire state."