There have been several wildfires in southern California recently and with a blend of factors (it’s dry, hot, and record high Santa Ana winds), these fires have destroyed buildings, burned down forests, and caused immense damage. People have been evacuated from several cities and counties, often bouncing from place to place trying to stay out of a wildfire’s way. The video of the wildfire raging right along the busy 405 is chilling to say the least.
Animals and people have been affected by these wildfires alike. There were horses in San Diego county that died and other horses just outside Los Angeles that also died because of the fires; people have lost everything because of these fires. If you aren’t in southern California (like me) but still want to help, there are so many ways in which to help from afar:
- The San Diego Humane Society – this humane society has a fire update page on their website about the fires near San Diego and has been working to help folks evacuate with their pets or be reunited with lost ones.
- If you are in the San Diego area: the San Diego County’s Department of Animal Services Lost and Found and the San Diego Humane Society Lost and Found are two places to look if your pet is missing. The San Diego Humane Society also had to temporarily evacuate one of their locations because of a wildfire (the Oceanside Campus) and according to their website, that location should be open again soon.
- The Humane Society of Ventura County – this humane society is helping animals affected by one of the worst fires in Southern California history (the Thomas Fire). This wildfire has yet to be contained and according to the LA Times, firefighters have said that this fire is leaving “behind a barren and blackened moonscape”. This humane society is working on helping all kinds of animals during this time.
- The Ventura County Animal Services has been helping to care for many animals during the wildfires and the best way to help them accomplish this goal is through financial donations. Similarly, you can also support the LA Animal Services through financial donations or through fostering an animal.
- The Gentle Barn in Santa Clarita has a rescue service program that has been taking in horses and other animals as well.
- The United Way of Greater Los Angeles has created a Southern California Wildfire Fund to help long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts specifically for low income families impacted by these fires. You can also donate specifically to those impacted by the Ventura County’s Thomas Fire through the United Way of Ventura County.
- GoFundMe has also highlighted several individual campaigns that are raising funds to rebuild after the fires.
- If you are in the Los Angeles area, the L.A. Kitchen is working on providing fresh meals for firefighters and wildfire victims and are looking for volunteers.