Families join forces searching for 2 missing Indigenous women near Prince Albert, Sask.
Happy Charles last seen April 3, Joanne Laurin last seen April 22
The families of two missing Indigenous women have joined forces in an attempt to find their loved ones.
Happy Charles, 42, went missing on April 3 after travelling to Prince Albert, Sask. Almost three weeks later, 25-year-old Joanne Laurin was also reported missing from the city.
While searchers don't believe the two cases are connected, family members and volunteer searchers are hoping they will be able to get better results by combining their efforts.
- Family appeals for information in 5th week since disappearance of Happy Charles
- Missing & Murdered: The Unsolved Cases of Indigenous Women and Girls
There's a lot to cover.- Search coordinator David Crane
"There's just nothing to go on," said search coordinator David Crane. "There are so many big areas. There's a lot to cover."
Both families are very worried about the two missing women.
Charles' mother Regina Poitras said her daughter was going to travel to Prince Albert from La Ronge to get her banking done.
"She's never gone four days without contacting me," said Poitras. "She was going to come back that Friday, and she never showed up."
The search is concentrating on two broad areas — locations around the nearby Wahpeton Dakota Nation and a 20-kilometre radius around Prince Albert, including a search of the river.
Around 50 people are currently searching the area right now, with more people coming in from northern Saskatchewan to help with search efforts.
Family members are fearing the worst.
"We've already questioned everybody on the street, and they all know her, but they haven't seen her," said Poitras. "Now it's mostly a recovery mission."
Crane said any information that searchers find will be handed over to police.
Happy Charles is five-foot three, 112 pounds with brown hair and eyes. Joanne Laurin is five-foot four, 125 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes.
Base camp for the search is currently based out of Wesley United Church (65 - 11 Street E.). On Saturday and Sunday, the base camp will move to the Allen Bird Memorial Gym at the Prince Albert Grand Council.
Anyone who would like to volunteer can call 1-855-425-1533.