Hundreds of thousands of Southern Californians are evacuating and at least 200 homes have been destroyed as a series of wildfires ravages the region. Here’s how to help the residents, first responders, and animals in need.
How to Help Evacuees
“With disasters such as these, local organizations like your local homeless shelter, animal shelter, or food bank are always good ones to donate to,” says Sara Nason, of Charity Navigator. The Ventura County Commission Foundation has set up a Disaster Relief Fund (which disperses money to nonprofits it feels can best serve the community), and the Ventura County Star has a list of school drives accepting donations.
National organizations are also mobilizing to help victims. You can donate to United Way of Ventura County and the American Red Cross, which has set up shelters in Ventura County and Los Angeles County. The Salvation Army of Ventura County is also accepting donations for people affected by the fire.
If you’re an evacuee, U-Haul is offering free 30-day storage to wildfire victims, and Facebook has set up a Crisis Response Page that connects victims with people nearby who can offer housing, clothing, or other resources. And YouCaring has created a landing page for people in need.
How to Help Firefighters
Firefighters are in need of Drip Drop, a powdered supplement that “helps keep them hydrated and avoid IV drips under these grueling conditions,” according to one local, who suggests purchasing them on Amazon or at Walgreens, and having them delivered to the Oxnard Fire Department, Ventura City Fire Department, and the Ventura County Fire Department.
How to Help Animals
If you live anywhere near the forest fires that are decimating the California trees PLEASE be aware that the animals are fleeing the fires and they may show up in your yards. The forestry department is urging you to bring your animals in at night and let the wild ones pass through.
Please put out BUCKETS OF WATER for them.
They are scared, exhausted and have lost their homes. They need to refuel.
If you know of other ways to help, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please spread the word!