A MESSAGE FROM THE CALIFORNIA FIRE FOUNDATION:
The last few days have been tough for California, and it has been heartening to see our state pull together in this time of crisis to support the victims of the fires that have affected so many lives. The California Fire Foundation has been overwhelmed with the incredible number of donations coming in from so many people, and the support that we have received on social media in spreading awareness of our efforts to aid firefighters, their families, and the victims of these fires.
However it is also necessary to clarify a few things to make sure that everyone’s efforts are put to the best use. The California Fire Foundation cannot accept the donation of any physical items, whether they are intended for the firefighters on the front lines or for victims. As other organizations have stated, fire departments have been flooded with well-meaning donations that often cause logistical problems for the men and women who are hard at work on the front lines of the fires. Additionally, our organization is not equipped to distribute donations to the victims of any of the fires, and we ask that you ensure that any donations of physical goods are carefully researched and only given where they are needed and requested.
The Foundation’s SAVE program provides direct assistance to wildfire victims in disasters such as these in the form of gift cards that can be used for immediate aid. These cards are distributed at the scenes of the disaster, and cannot be applied for or given directly by the Foundation. This program is intended to give direct aid where it is needed most, and cards will continue to be distributed as the fire situation evolves. Any donations that are intended for fire victims should be made directly to the SAVE program, where the funds will be used for the most good.
Thank you again for your continued and generous support of the California Fire Foundation, and for the brave firefighters who are risking their lives to keep California safe.
Please visit the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services Resource Guide for more information on the status of these disasters including:
- Evacuation Information
- Community Resource List
- Contact Information for Responding Agencies
- Fire Maps
- How You Can Help
SURVIVING AID TO VICTIMS OF EMERGENCY (SAVE) PROGRAM:
Through our SAVE Program, we partner with fire departments and their respective bargaining units across the state of California to provide immediate financial assistance to eligible victims of fire and disaster in the form of $100 gift cards. To be eligible, victims must have incurred 25% damage or more to their place of residence.
Since firefighters are the first line of defense, they are the designated distributors of the cards. SAVE cards are being distributed for victims of the Camp Fire, Hill Fire, and Woolsey Fire. Due to the nature of these disasters, program designees are working as quickly as they can to get out as much assistance as possible, but are doing so with limited resources.
Because of the unprecedented disaster and impact, the distribution of these cards is changing by the day so firefighters can maximize getting aid to victims as fast and as best they can. Departments on the scenes of the fires will continue to navigate these rapidly evolving circumstances and adjust their distribution plan as the fires shift and as communities eventually start to repopulate.