A Call To Action: Help The Victims of The L.A. / Ventura Fires


A series of wildfires the last two weeks scorched more than 300,000 acres in Los Angeles, Ventura, and San Diego counties in Southern California. The first and largest blaze, dubbed the Thomas Fire, started December 4 in Ventura County and has moved North, becoming a threat to Santa Barbara County.

Here are the numbers as of Tuesday morning, according to Los Angeles County officials and Cal Fire, a state fire-safety agency:

  • Thomas Fire in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties: 234,200 acres, 20% containment, 794 structures destroyed, 187 structures damaged out of at least 18,000 threatened.
  • Skirball Fire in Bel Air: 422 acres, 85% containment.
  • Lilac Fire in San Diego County: 4,100 acres, 90% contained, 151 structures destroyed and 56 damaged.
  • Rye Fire in Santa Clarita: 6,049 acres, 93% containment.
  • Creek Fire in Sylmar: 15,619 acres, 98% containment, at least 30 structures damaged or destroyed, at least 2,500 homes threatened.

As many as 200,000 people had been displaced in Los Angeles and Ventura counties and authorities closed — and then reopened — parts of the 405 Freeway on Wednesday last week, causing gridlock throughout the region. More than 50 schools were closed in the Los Angeles area through the end of the week. Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency, freeing up state funds to help tackle the wildfires.

Here are a few ways you can help:

Thomas Fire Fund

  • The United Way of Ventura County, American Red Cross of Ventura County, and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services have teamed up to create the Thomas Fire Fund.
  • Text UWVC to 41444 to make a cash donation, call 805-485-6288, or go online to United Way of Ventura County’s website.
  • Checks with “Thomas Fire Fund” in the memo line can be mailed to 702 County Square Drive, Suite 100 Ventura, CA 93003.

The Salvation Army

  • The Salvation Army is accepting food and water at the Ventura County Fairgrounds.
  • You can donate cash by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY or visiting the website.

The Red Cross

The Humane Society of Ventura County

  • The Humane Society of Ventura County has taken in over 100 animals.
  • Drop off any of the following items at 402 Bryant St. in Ojai: Alfalfa hay, Timothy hay, cat chow, rabbit food, flashlights, headlamps, lanterns, water troughs, bottled water, fruit, snacks, hoses, and power generators.
  • Donate food and water for volunteers, or make a cash donation on HSVC’s website.

Los Angeles County Animal Care Foundation

  • Donate to Noah’s Legacy Fund, which provides supplies, training, and equipment to first responders charged with rescuing animals from areas stricken by natural disasters.
  • Mail donations to P.O. Box 100515, Pasadena, CA 91189-0515 or through the LACACF website.

GoFundMe campaigns

Direct Relief

  • Santa Barbara-based organization Direct Relief is donating 100% of designated funds to victims of the wildfires.
  • Donate money for supplies online and make sure you direct your donation to “Southern California Wildfires.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s