Calls to the Distress Centre in Calgary have increased by 50 per cent since the flood emergency started and counsellors expect that number to go higher.

"Everyone's got struggles in their lives and this really added to it, so this would quickly snowball any underlying issues that were already there," said counsellor Michelle Wickerson.

One quarter of those calls are related to the flood said Wickerson — from people worried about the bills as they clean up the flood damage to people needing to be connected to other services.

"So some are feeling more frantic and more desperate. Others are really gathering the information and looking at what their options are and what's availalbe to them now and in the coming weeks."

People at the Calgary Counselling Centre advise flood victims to take one thing at a time, to talk to family and friends and to ensure they take care of themselves physically and mentally.

Provincial help

On Friday Health Minister Fred Horne appointed a new Chief Mental Health Officer for Alberta.

Dr. Michael Trew will be in chParge of deploying resources, such as counsellors and nurses, to places where they are needed.

"Regardless of how you may have been affected, either directly or maybe as a family member or friend or neighbour of someone who's been affected, you are going to feel on some level, the impact of this disaster," said Horne.

According to the minister, Albert has also reached out to neighbouring provinces, which have provided additional health care staff.