How to help those impacted by the California wildfires

Over the last week, wildfires have scorched parts of California, leaving communities devastated. Thousands of homes have been evacuated as firefighters continue to battle the blaze.

Universities such as Pepperdine have closed. Slightly further north, Chico State University closed their campus until November 16th, but classes have been suspended until November 26th.

Whether you live in a different part of California or are thousands of miles away looking to offer support, there are a number of ways you can help support wildfire victims and firefighters at this time.

Donate lodging.

Airbnb helps “people find safe, welcoming places to stay while they rebuild their lives after natural disasters.” Currently, there are around eight hundred people offering free lodging to wildfire victims in the Ventura County area. If you have an available place for evacuees to stay, you join the Airbnb community and offer your home to someone in need. For more information, visit the Airbnb website.

Support the Red Cross.

Whether you are looking to volunteer and donate your time or donate your money, the Red Cross has a number of ways you can support evacuees and victims.

Give canned goods.

The Ventura Salvation Army is currently seeking non-perishable food items for its pantry. You can either donate goods to the pantry directly or contribute a monetary donation online.

Provide food and shelter to rescued animals.

The Humane Society of Ventura County is working tirelessly to take care of local animals who were abandoned during evacuations. Donate through their website and help them better serve the animals they are currently taking care of.

Help Hollywood support its community.

The Entertainment Industry Foundation is raising money to actively support California firefighters and first responders battling the fires. Their Fire Relief Fund is a part of the Music for Relief and seeks to support the emergency responders for all three fires.

Directly assist the firefighters.

You can donate direction to the Los Angeles Fire Department to directly support the first responders fighting the fires. LAFD provides private funding to help maintain supplies and equipment during this time.

Give to Baby2Baby.

Baby2Baby provides support for low-income children, ages 0 to 12, providing them with necessities like diapers, clothes and shoes. You can purchase items from their Target registry to help support families during this time.  

Volunteer.

The California Volunteers has compiled a list of volunteer positions available for all three active wildfires. Consider donating your time to those in need.

There are a number of other local and national efforts you can donate to in order to help those impacted by the fires. Remember, every gift counts.

If you haven’t already, sign up for text messages from Civil Dispatch to get up-to-date information on threats and severe weather in your area!

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