The Helena Fire which started in Helena, Calif. in August 2017 left a path of destruction during its nearly three-month burn.
A fallen tree had struck a powerline and ignited a wildfire that destroyed 21,846 acres including 72 homes and 61 buildings. Many families were displaced by the devastation, including those in the town of Junction City.
Kirk Vogt, a Loveall Foundation volunteer, called the principal of the Junction City Elementary School to offer the Foundation’s resources and see how the charity could help students.
“We distributed gift cards so the kids could replace their burnt schoolbooks,” Kirk said. “We also found out that the 8th graders annual graduation trip to Washington, D.C. had been canceled because they didn’t feel right about traveling to the nation’s capital while many of them and their friends were displaced.”
“The children took the money they raised for their 8th grade trip and instead gave it to the families who lost everything in the fire.”
The Loveall Foundation learned about the incredible generosity of the 8th graders and underwrote the costs so the class could go on the eagerly-anticipated and educational adventure to Washington D.C.
In October 2017, another wildfire known as the Tubbs Fire, raged through parts of Napa, Sonoma and Lake counties, destroying 5,643 structures of which half were in the Northern California town of Santa Rosa.
Until then, the Tubbs Fire had been the most destructive wildfire in California history, but it would be superseded by the Camp Fire a year later.
The Loveall Foundation leapt into action and, working staff and volunteers from UFCW 8-Golden State, came to the aid of fire victims with relief and resources. UFCW 8’s Santa Rosa office was converted into a shop where fire victims could come to pick up household and clothing items, a bite to eat or just a sympathetic ear in a tumultuous time.
“We like to reach into our communities when people are in need. We ask everyone keep their eyes open for someone we can help today, tomorrow or in the next hour. We have the capability of acting quickly and we can help in any number of circumstances from an individual to a large group. When children need help, we are here,” said Norma Tursky, a Foundation volunteer.