Photo: Ventura County Community Foundation
As we put 2020 behind us, we are reminded that perseverance is a collective and shared effort. Perseverance requires a diverse group of community leaders, ready and willing to respond to the needs presented by modern challenges. This perseverance has been embodied by countless disaster-affected communities on their journey to recovery, especially those impacted by the repeated trauma brought by wildfire seasons in California. While 2018 may feel like a lifetime ago, the 2018 California wildfire season was the deadliest and most destructive wildfire season on record—only rivaled by last year’s season— during which more than 7,000 fires burned nearly 1.7 million acres. Climate-fueled dry seasons have sparked scores of increasingly destructive fires over recent years. As extreme wildfire seasons become the norm, climate change and its impacts continue to threaten vulnerable communities and ecosystems across California.
It’s for all of these reasons that we thank you for your extreme generosity. By giving to GlobalGiving’s 2018 California Wildfire Relief Fund, you joined more than 4,000 others to raise nearly $1.4 million in support of Californian communities as they recover and rebuild.
Our Disaster Response Team is now closing this Fund after more than two years of providing direct financial support to GlobalGiving’s network of community-led nonprofit partners in California. While the fund may be closing, these partners remain committed to responding to needs exacerbated by the fires and to mitigate future risks.
Here’s a snapshot of how your financial support helped some of our incredible partners in our final round of flexible grants:
- The Community Foundation of Mendocino County has been committed to understanding how wildfires impact the rural/urban communities in Mendocino County to gain a comprehensive picture of their priorities following the devastating 2018 and 2020 fires. Its Community Resiliency and Disaster Preparedness Fund has been a powerful tool to increase fire-impacted communities' capability to withstand future disasters. Through this fund, the organization has granted a generator to a local radio station to ensure that people living in rural areas receive critical, accurate information in times of disaster or crisis.
- Following the Woolsey and Hill Fires, the 805 Undocufund was launched with the Ventura County Community Foundation's support. The fund helps undocumented individuals and families impacted by disasters get the support and resources necessary to recover and rebuild their lives. Because this community does not have access to federal safety net programs, they are often ignored in greater response efforts. The fund is now also assisting families impacted by COVID-19 by providing support ranging from repairing essential vehicles to dental expenses.
- California Vocations serves adults with developmental disabilities through residential and vocational support. Following the 2018 Camp Fire, three of its residential living centers and 25 transportation vehicles were destroyed. Many of its constituents still need essential housing improvements. California Vocations is working to meet this need by providing wheelchair ramps, new roofs, and remodeled bathrooms to its constituents.
We’re sad to say goodbye, but we hope you’ll join us by giving to our new California Wildfire Relief Fund. This fund will provide much-needed support to community-led organizations committed to driving ongoing wildfire recovery in California.
Thank you for your commitment to long-term disaster recovery.
Mikaela + the GlobalGiving Team