7 Ways You Can Help Those Affected By The California Wildfires Right Now

Over 2.5 million acres have burned.

by Syeda Khaula Saad and Mia Mercado
Originally Published: 
MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images/MediaNews Group/Getty Images

With more than 2.5 million acres burned since the start of the year, this is one of the most severe California wildfire seasons in recent history, the New York Times reports. The fires were started by lightning and have now engulfed the Lake Napa, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, and Yolo counties in California, extending as far north as Oregon and Washington, according to CNN. And with forecasts of dry thunderstorms that could spark more fires, it's difficult to tell how long it'll be before the fires are put out. In the meantime, there are ways to help victims of the wildfires.

It can get confusing figuring out exactly how to help victims of wildfires because the effects are so widespread. There are those that have lost family members to the fires, residents whose homes have been taken by the flames, people whose businesses have been burned down, amongst other things. But there are so many different ways to help the people that are in need, even while California continues to fight off the wildfires.

Despite many experts calling these particular wildfires unusual , California is no stranger to wildfires. This means that there are already many organizations set up to help you aid those who may be in need as a result of the fires.

Here are seven ways you can help the victims who have been affected by the California wildfires.

Donate To The California Fire Foundation

More than 14,000 firefighters have been working to battle the wildfires across the state, according to CNBC. The California Fire Foundation works to provide financial and emotional support for the families of firefighters who were killed in fires. By donating to the foundation, you can extend a helping hand to the families of brave firefighters.

Keep An Eye Out For A GoFundMe

If you want to directly help citizens in need, look out for any GoFundMe links that may be shared on your feed. Also, GoFundMe recently announced that they would be working with verified fundraisers for the wildfires to create a hub for users to easily find places to donate to in order to help those in need. Some include a fund to support the family of the late Mike Fournier (a pilot who was killed while putting out fires with water droplets) and the Jamie and Jordan Vacaville Fire Fund to support a single mom and her son, who were both displaced from their homes due to the wildfires.

Support GlobalGiving

GlobalGiving is a non-profit that helps connect donors with different grassroots organizations around the world. They've set up the California Wildfire Relief Fund to help residents donate money to those who have been displaced because of the wildfires. The fund will help provide food, shelter, and emergency supplies for those in need.

Donate To California Community Foundation's Wildfire Relief Fund

The California Community Foundation created the Wildfire Relief Fund to help support the immediate and long-term relief efforts for those who were affected by the fires — including animals. The foundation works with different communities in California to target their specific needs, whether that's emergency shelters, meals, or first-aid, the foundation aims to supply it.

Support The American Red Cross

The American Red Cross is one of the organizations that usually sets up funds when disasters strike. By giving a one-time donation or setting up monthly payments, you can help those who have been devastated by the effects of the wildfires. The American Red Cross provides meals, emergency shelter, and relief items to people in need.

Donate To The California Fire Foundation

The California Fire Foundation's Supplying Aid to Victims of Emergency (SAVE) program helps bring immediate relief to victims of wildfires through financial support. Your donation helps provide $250 gift cards to eligible victims of the wildfires so they can purchase basic necessities they might not otherwise have immediate access to.

Support Local Food Banks

While many food banks aren't accepting food donations due to COVID-19 restrictions, you can still provide support through financial donations. The Food Bank for Monterey County is one organization accepting monetary donations that help provide food to families impacted by the wildfires. The California Association of Food Banks distributes donations to 42 food banks across the state. You can find more California food banks to support through Feeding America's website.

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