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Massive Wildfires in California is Now Largest in State History

WCC Team August 14, 2018
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More than a dozen fires are burning simultaneously in California. Coming from a disaster area “Gaza”, this is a destructive disaster I have never seen before. 

Today we lose another firefighter....

More than 14,000 firefighters and hundreds of US army personnel are trying to contain the more than 15 major fires burning throughout the state. The largest of the fifteen is the Mendocino Complex Fire, which consists the Ranch and River fires in Northern California. The blaze has burned 305,152 acres, killed one firefighter and wounded two others. Thursday, August 9th it was reported that 52% of the fire was contained.

The second largest fire, Carr Fire in Shasta County, has been burning for more than two weeks and consumed 178,752 acres until Thursday evening. The fire has killed eight people, including three firefighters. 42% of the fire has been contained to date.

The third largest is Ferguson Fire, near Yosemite National Park, which burns in more than 95,000 acres. The fire has lasted more than three weeks and killed two people.

 There are growing concerns about the impact on residential communities, including Lake Elsinore. Some small communities in Riverside County are subject to mandatory evacuation orders affecting about 7,500 apartment buildings, according to the authorities.

Helping yourself save lives and helps first responders: 

“Even if you're miles away, you want to be prepared if you're near the fire area or in an environment that can burn," said Thanh Nguyen with the SoCal Team One Fire Management Team, who suggested having a packed bag ready to go. 

If you are not sure what to put in a go bag, please take World Cares Center’s Ready to Respond Training. The full training can be accessed free of charge here and houses critical disaster preparedness and response training http://www.disastervolunteerismacademy.org/

Ways to help others

Amid all of the fire devastation hitting the area, some might be searching for ways to help. Below is a list of organizations currently active in helping. 

GoFundMe has hundreds of fundraisers posted by people impacted by the fire; the site has curated lists of verified campaigns to help those affected in the Carr Fire, the Mendocino Complex Fire, and the Holy Fire, as well as campaigns posted from throughout Southern California.

 

The Salvation Army’s Northern and Southern California branches are accepting monetary donations, all of which they say will go directly to relief efforts. The organization has deployed disaster response crews to assist displaced individuals and emergency responders with food and shelter.

 

The Wildland Firefighter Association and Firefighters Charitable Foundation are fundraising to support medical costs for firefighters working to put out the wildfires, along with gathering donations for families of first responders killed on the front lines.

 

CNN's Impact Your World connects people to donate to different local aid organizations, including Community Foundation Sonoma County (which funds Sonoma County charities)

Volunteer with Local Relief Efforts

The state of California’s California Volunteers initiative has compiled a list of on-the-ground volunteering and donation opportunities for the Carr, Mendocino Complex, Ferguson, and Cranston fires.

 

The California Community Foundation has curated a list of information and resources, including volunteering opportunities and fundraisers, to help the homeless in Southern California who have been affected by the wildfires. The organization is also working to rebuild homes and offer medical and mental health support in the aftermath of the fires.

 

Facebook has set up crisis response pages for the Carr, Mendocino Complex, and Holy fires, which curate local news, fundraisers, and calls for supplies and item donations. Users in the area are also able to check in as “safe” for friends to see.

The Haven Humane Society has evacuated hundreds of pets and strays in the Northern California area, requiring volunteers, donations, and foster homes to help transport, house, and care for local cats and dogs. In Southern California, Los Angeles Animal Service has put out an urgent call for foster homes.

Interested in staying connected join the

https://www.readyresponders.org/sign-up

The Ready Responders Network™ (RRN) is a virtual information sharing network that engages and empowers individuals and communities working together to become more resilient in the face of crisis and disasters. During crisis the RRN provides a virtual outlet for local communities to engage in a coordinated grassroots response to crisis and disasters as a virtual emergency operations center.

I will continuously post updates on the current wildfires and how to help in the 2018 California Wildfires Group with in the Ready Responders Network. If you are an organization seeks volunteers please post your needs, I can also walk you through how to use all the tools with in the RRN .

For more information or help please contact me.

Tamer Ajrami

World Cares Center

Visiting Fellow

IREX CSP 2018

520 8th Avenue

Suite 201B

NYC 10018

Www.worldcares.org

Facebook: World Cares Center

Twitter: World Cares Center

Linkedin: World Cares Center

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