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'We come together': Nova Scotians help neighbors, strangers in Fiona aftermath

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At a community centre in Beaverbank, N.S., volunteer Maureen Fedorus has been busy preparing food in the kitchen for those who remain without power at home.

A salad, chicken soup, and apple crisp are all on the menu at the Beaver Bank Kinsac Community Centre as she tries to give nearby residents a bit of comfort in tough times.

"I mean you can have a granola bar or whatever, but it doesn't give you the same feeling. Some people haven't had anything hot in days," she says.

She's among the many in the area without electricity at home since Fiona tore through the region Friday night, uprooting trees and bringing down power lines.

But while she may not have power at home, she does have the power to pitch in.

"And just the community, and having a place to come and just take our minds off of what we're dealing with back home," she says.

The efforts of volunteers like Fedorus are more than welcome for those who stopped by the centre Monday to get hot coffee, food, and charge up their devices.

"We sure need a hot shower," says Judy Young, "and a hot coffee, which is why I came here today."

"It's very tough," says Mino Erfani, "but thank you God we have each other, and just we come together."

In central Halifax, one resident set up a special station for neighbors who needed a bit of 'recharging.'

"I went knocking door to door on the people that I knew, and I said 'hey guys, I know you don't have electricity, come to my house,'" says Beth Lachance.

Lechance was lucky to have power at her home soon after the storm, so she ran a power line out of her window and onto the street, setting up a table and chairs for anyone to sit and enjoy a hot beverage.

"Then my boyfriend also put it on reddit, so then people from other parts of the city were coming to charge their devices and have a hot cup of coffee," she says.

In Antigonish, Emilie Chiasson witnessed a major cleanup next door, after the father of several university students renting there, drove all the way from Ontario to lend a hand after trees fell onto the property.

"He came with a power saw and he with his wife and all the girls next door, worked, (and) when I got back I couldn’t believe they had cleaned the entire yard up," says Chiasson, who posted photos of the end result on Facebook.

As Cape Breton continues to struggle with the worst of the damage, Canadian Armed Forces veteran Roland Lawless decided he would travel from his home in West Chezzetcook, N.S., to the island to help in whatever way he can.

Lawless packed up an RV with a chainsaw and other tools and headed out on the road Monday afternoon.

"I got a lot of veteran friends down there. And that's me, I just keep on going," he says.

"Any of the veterans down there that may need a hand, we're open for suggestions, once we get there we're going to Inverness village campground and set up there that will be our home base and then we'll go out from there," he says.

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