Relief after Wildfires: The Red Cross is Here

Relief After Wildfires: The Red Cross is Here, Marin Magazine

Red Cross volunteers were touched by the spirit of
Brian Lackey as they delivered supplies to his
devastated neighborhood in Santa Rosa, CA after the fires.

The wildfires that began on Oct. 8 became one of the deadliest wildfires in California history. The vast majority of homes lost, were in Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino. The American Red Cross has been working tirelessly to support those who have been displaced by these wildfires. Nearly 2,000 volunteers deployed to support the California Wildfire response, half of whom were from northern California. The operation continues to be led from a base in Sacramento and the main warehouse for the entire response is based in Santa Rosa.

So far, the Red Cross has accomplished the following:

•     The Red Cross, community and government partners have provided more than 27,900 overnight stays in emergency shelters.

•     With the help of partners, the Red Cross has served more than 189,200 meals and snacks, and provided more than 15,300 mental health and health services to support and care for those affected.

•     The Red Cross has distributed more than 144,300 emergency relief items such as masks, gloves, rakes, trash bags and comfort kits containing deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste and other hygiene items to people in need.

•     To help people recover and get back on their feet, the Red Cross has opened more than 2,300 cases, reaching more than 6,200 Californians.

•     More than 150 Red Cross disaster workers are on the ground now, many housed at a staff shelter at Domenica College in Marin County.

Bill and Patsy Hahn with a Red Crosser

Bill Hahn, 84, brought his wife Patsy, home from the hospital to their home in Calistoga on Tuesday night. She had fallen and was released with bruises and a neck brace. They went to sleep and then were awakened by banging on the door at 1 a.m. They were told to evacuate immediately. Bill put his wife and some valuables into the car and drove out of town as fast as he could. They ended up at the emergency shelter at the Napa Valley Community College. They slept, ate, were made to feel comfortable, and then volunteers learned they were about to celebrate their 66th wedding anniversary.

The next thing they knew, a cake, flowers and 200 people showed up to help them celebrate. Even the mayor of Calistoga stopped by to say hello because Bill and Patsy Hahn are well-known in his town as wonderful volunteers. Patsy could not stop talking about the Red Cross and the community workers at the shelter.

“I am so impressed with the Red Cross,” she said. “Everyone has been so sweet to us. They protect me. A nurse even took out my stitches this morning and some kind woman helped me take a shower.”

“Everyone has been so wonderful to us,” Bill added, “The sadness and anxiety have been taken away by this place.”

As long-term recovery continues for the residents of California affected by the wildfires, the Red Cross is still on the ground supporting the response effort in counties like Sonoma, Napa and Mendocino.

Marin Magazine and SPACES proudly teamed up with sister publication, Make It Better, as well as Napa Sonoma Magazine and Diablo Magazine, to raise money for the American Red Cross and their work to help those affected by recent wildfires in California. Thanks to the generosity of the American public and the collaboration of these publications, including a beautiful graphic created by the talent at Diablo Magazine, more than $10,000 was raised to support the Red Cross relief efforts.