A release from Episcopal Relief and Development:
Episcopal Relief & Development is partnering with the Diocese of Northern California to provide emergency support to help the most vulnerable in communities impacted by the Carr Fire that started on July 23. The agency is providing support for rental assistance, short-term storage for recovered belongings, food, gasoline and replacement of lost household supplies.
“The diocese and congregations are working together taking into account lessons from last year’s devastating fires,” said Katie Mears, Senior Director of Episcopal Relief & Development’s US Disaster Program. “It is heartening to witness the church work together at all levels to monitor the fires, assess damage and help those most in need.”
The largest of the 17 wildfires currently burning throughout the state, the Carr Fire is heading west after tearing through Redding, a city located approximately 200 miles north of San Francisco. Evacuations began in the middle of the night on Thursday, July 26 which included many parishioners as well as their church, All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Redding, California. The fire is considered only 30 percent contained as of Tuesday, but at this time, the evacuation orders for All Saints’ neighborhood have been lifted, enabling clergy and leaders to return and reopen the church on Wednesday.
The Carr Fire, which the authorities said was caused by a mechanical failure in a vehicle, has grown to cover 110,000 acres by July 31. The blaze has killed at least six people as of August 1 and destroyed more than 1,000 homes.
For over 75 years, Episcopal Relief & Development has served as a compassionate response to human suffering in the world. The agency works with more than 3 million people in nearly 40 countries worldwide to overcome poverty, hunger and disease through multi-sector programs, using the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a framework. An independent 501(c)(3) organization, it works closely with Anglican Communion and ecumenical partners to help communities create long-term development strategies and rebuild after disasters.
Image from ABC7 Eyewitness News, “Carr Fire, Ferguson Fire and beyond: Photos from the wildfires across California”