As impending floodwaters threaten to separate Prairie families, a rising tide of philanthropists has begun to trickle into Manitoba’s most vulnerable zones.

Levels continually creep higher along the banks of the Red River, and foreshadow disaster for nearly 200 homes and families in the path of the winding waterway, with the potential to displace residents mid-week.

Praying for the best, though anticipating the worst, local chaplain and disaster relief phenom Marj Pettinger prepared yesterday for a two-week trek to pull Canadians from hot water.

“We are, all of us, body, soul, and spirit,” she said. “I think helping others in need is part of who we were created to be — no man is an island.”

Pettinger joins nearly 50 Red Cross volunteers who have descended upon the Prairie province, on a mission to reunite families torn apart by the brewing natural disaster.

As locals tirelessly pack sandbags and gather supplies, Red Cross volunteers are preparing to act as a life-line between evacuees.

“This is the time when people’s heart-strings are pulled and they want to get involved — we can always use more hands,” she told Metro.

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