Dixie Fire update August 9: No lives lost, many lives changed

August 09, 2021 | by Steve Elliott

Dixie Fire update August 9: No lives lost, many lives changed

California-Nevada VIM coordinator Steve Elliott serving at the local assistance center in Quincy, CA.

Editor's Note:  Give Now!  Right now, our financial support is crucial.  Our dollars make gift cards, hotel rooms, groceries, and clean water possible for our brothers and sisters affected by the Dixie Fire and their calls for help are coming.

  • Click here to donate to our California-Nevada Conference Disaster Relief Fund.
  • Click here to send your financial support to UMCOR which supports fire relief and recovery throughout the Western US. 

Now the largest such fire in California History, the Dixie Fire is a devastating moment in time.  Small towns, like Greenville, Crescent Mills, Canyon Dam and others virtually wiped off the map.  No lives lost yet, but many lives changed.
The California Nevada Conference is responding to help.  The UMC churches in Quincy, Portola, Greenville and Susanville are assisting evacuees.  The Conference Early Response Team served for three days at the Local Assistance Center in Quincy this past weekend.  We expect to return as the next assistance locations open.  We will be responding over the coming weeks as survivors need help with housing, food, clothing and living expenses.
The most important part of our services is to be a ministry of presence – listening to survivors as they grieve their loss, express their fears and ponder an uncertain future.  The local pastors and the Early Response Team have a willing ear and open heart.
Most of the survivors are long term hill country residents living a modest lifestyle in close knit communities.  They know and care for each other over generations.  We are struck by how they are reluctant to ask for the help they now need from the “outside” world.  Proud people.
Our immediate support has included distributing $10,000 worth of gift cards, emergency hygiene kits, wildfire buckets, cleaning supplies and local church assistance.  We envision this support repeating, plus addressing other needs, as the next few weeks unfold.  And even now, we are anticipating the long-term recovery.
The most immediately useful way to help is to donate financially.  Click here to give to the California Nevada Disaster Response Fund.  
We are determined to see this tragic event through.  Our prayers and support will help many survivors.
For more about how you can help assist with this and other wildfires, contact Sonja Edd-Bennett, the Conference Disaster Response Coordinator at sonjaeb@calnevumc.org or Steve Elliott, UMVIM Coordinator for our Conference at UMVIMCoordinator@calnevumc.org.  They can provide suggestions as to what local churches can do and explain available training opportunities.

Steve Elliott serves a the California-Nevada Conference Disaster Response & UMVIM Coordinator (Director).

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