It has been over a week since three wildfires first broke out across Northern and Southern California destroying thousands of homes and displacing hundreds of thousands of people. How can those of us across the country in Birmingham, AL help those affected by the fires?
According to the Center for International Disaster Information (part of the United States Agency for International Development) says monetary donations are almost always the most efficient way to help in a disaster.
Donate to Nonprofits
Several nonprofit organizations are serving those in need by providing financial aid, medical care, food and shelter. Here are some you can donate to:
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross is accepting donations to help provide meals, essential items and emotional care for evacuees and first responders of the CA wildfires.
As a nonprofit organization, the American Red Cross depends on volunteers and generosity of the American public to perform its mission. Here’s how to donate:
- Call 1.800.RED CROSS
- Text CAWILDFIRES to 90999
The American Red Cross also supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood donations. To find a drive near you, click here.
In response to the wildfires, the Salvation Army has deployed emergency disaster service teams to multiple locations in and around Butte County in CA. Teams provide three meals a day, snacks, drinks, essential items and emotional/spiritual care to evacuees and first responders.
With your donation, the Salvation Army is able to provide relief and assistance to victims of the fires for as long as possible.
Entertainment Industry Foundation
Did you know it costs $275 to fund just one hydration pack for a firefighter?
To help firefighters and other emergency workers battling the fires in CA, the Entertainment Industry Foundation is raising money for the Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation, which provides hydration backpacks and night vision goggles for helicopter pilots.
Humane Society of Ventura County
The Humane Society of Ventura County, CA is helping animals displaced by the Woolsey and Hill Fires. To support the organization’s efforts, you may purchase supplies through the society’s Amazon wish list.
Donate via Online Platforms
Facebook has partnered with GlobalGiving to provide relief to those impacted by the fires in the form of emergency supplies (food, water, medicine) in addition to longer-term recovery assistance to help residents recover and build.
As of now, $124,869 has been raised of their $1 million goal.
Donations made to wildfire relief funds via Google will be given to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy who will distribute the money to local nonprofits who are helping the cause.
Crowdfunding—the practice of funding a project or venture by raising small amounts of money from a large number of people—has become a prominent way of helping in times of national disasters.
GoFundMe has organized a page listing many of the relief efforts in Northern and Southern CA that are in need of donations.
With help from people like you, GoFundMe donors from around the world have contributed $20 million to the cause.