How to Help the Victims of the California Wildfires
Two major wildfires in Southern California and one in the north are wreaking devastation across the state, already having killed at least 31 people and forcing some 150,000 to abandon their homes
Two major wildfires in Southern California and one in the north are wreaking devastation across the state, already having killed at least 31 people and forcing some 150,000 to abandon their homes.
According to ABC News, more than 6,700 residences and businesses have been destroyed thus far in the Camp Fire in Northern California’s Butte County, which started on Nov. 8. Meanwhile, the Woolsey and Hill fires, which ignited the same day, have ravaged Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. At least 177 homes, many of which belonged to celebrities, have been destroyed in the area. In all, almost 200,000 acres of land have been burned across California, and about 228 people are missing.
As of Monday morning, the Camp Fire was only 25 percent contained and the Woolsey and Hill fires were about 75 percent contained, which makes providing support to the region crucial. Here is a collection of organizations that are helping with aid and recovery on the ground.
American Red Cross
American Red Cross has established shelters across the area and is also providing emotional support for those who’ve been affected by the devastation. It’s possible to donate directly to their efforts in the California wildfires through the website. You can also text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 contribution.
Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation
This organization supports the Los Angeles Fire Department, which has assumed much of the burden of containing the fires, as well locating and helping victims, in the southern part of the state. Donating money, as opposed to contributing goods, is the best way to support the firefighters. Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation has started a campaign to provide hydration packs, according to LA Magazine.
CCF Wildlife Relief Fund
The California Community Foundation’s Wildfire Relief Fund leads both recovery efforts, as well as prevention and preparedness campaigns. In the wake of the current fires, the organization aims to rebuild homes, provide mental health services, medical care, financial assistance and other basic needs. Donate online. You may also send checks payable to the California Community Foundation. Checks should be mailed to: California Community Foundation 221 S. Figueroa St., Suite 400 Los Angeles, CA 90012.
United Way of Greater Los Angeles
Focusing on low-income individuals and families, United Way of LA started a relief fund to support long-term recover for those affected by the Woolsey and Hill fires. The efforts will be largely dedicated to helping victims reestablish their lives. You can donate online or text “UWVC” to 41444.
Humane Society of Ventura County
Animals in the area affected by the wildfires are also in need of assistance, which the local Humane Society chapter is providing. You can donate online to support shelters taking these animals in, or you can contribute by purchasing an item off the group’s Amazon wishlist, such as wheelbarrows, stretchers and chairs.
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This California-based nonprofit specifically responds to natural disasters, poverty and other emergency situations. Donate online to their wildfire relief efforts, which provide masks and medicine for both victims and first responders. The organization also maintains a standing inventory of life-saving items.
The Firefighters Charitable Foundation
This organization works with volunteer fire departments, which have played an important role in the relief efforts across the state. It also supports fire safety programs and provides first aid education by working directly with those affected and collaborating with other charities. Donate by calling 516-249-0332.