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30 Days Later: The California Wildfires Response

wildfire-california
The Butte and Valley fires burned more than 150,000 square acres and destroyed more than 1,700 homes, displacing thousands of families.

Middletown, CA (October 12, 2015) – The American Red Cross and many community partners and agencies continue to deliver humanitarian assistance to families in Calaveras, Amador, and Lake Counties one month after two of the most destructive wildfires in California’s history sparked. The Butte and Valley fires burned more than 150,000 square acres and destroyed more than 1,700 homes, displacing thousands of families.

Red Cross and community volunteers began helping within the first minutes of the fires, providing shelter, food, water, basic necessities, mental health, and basic health services for thousands of people in the path of the wildfires. As evacuation orders were lifted, Red Cross volunteers working together with many community members, distributed drinking water, hot meals, and clean-up and relief supplies to impacted neighborhoods supporting people as they returned to their properties. Red Cross caseworkers are meeting one-on-one with each family affected by the wildfires to understand each unique situation and help them on the road to recovery with the information, assistance, and access to resources from numerous partner agencies.

“As the fires destroyed buildings, neighbors instantly came together demonstrating their communities’ amazing generosity and resilience,” said Jeff Baumgartner, Executive Director, American Red Cross of the California Northwest. “The Red Cross is proud to be one of many agencies working to ensure that basic needs are met, to work with the communities on long-term recovery needs, and to help them be prepared for and more resilient in the face of future wildfires.”

California Wildfires Response by the Numbers:

  • over 120,000 meals and snacks served by Salvation Army, Southern Baptist, community groups, local restaurants and the Red Cross
  • over 58,000 relief items water, snacks, hot meals, non-perishable meals, and clean-up items such as work gloves, buckets, trash bags, sifters, and dust masks
  • over 11,000 overnight stays in 12 community or Red Cross shelters
  • over 9,900 health and mental health contacts
  • over 1,500 cases opened by Red Cross caseworkers to provide individualized recovery support.
  • Where To Find Assistance

    FEMA

    People affected by the Valley, Butte and Rough fires are encourage for register for FEMA assistance by calling 1-800-621-3362 or TTY 1-800-462-7585. Online registration is also available at: www.DisasterAssistance.gov

    Red Cross Information Hotline

    People affected by the Valley, Butte and Rough fires can still (855) 224-2490 to learn about Red Cross assistance available.