Donation Doubles Support for Thomas Fire Survivors
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ThomasFireHelp has been devoted to assisting community members to rebuild their lives after the devastating Thomas Fire, Montecito Mudslide and Holiday Fire. To further support the ongoing recovery, the Ventura County Community Foundation (VCCF) has awarded ThomasFireHelp with a $12,500 grant, which will be doubled, thanks to a matching grant from the Gene Haas Foundation.
“The ThomasFireHelp team has played such an important role in supporting survivors and continues to be a leader in long-term recovery efforts. We are proud to support their vision to connect help with a need in the Ventura community,” said Vanessa Bechtel, President & CEO of VCCF.
Earlier this summer, the Gene Haas Foundation issued a challenge grant to support the continuing operations of ThomasFireHelp. “We are excited that philanthropic leaders like the Ventura County Community Foundation are supporting the work of ThomasFireHelp. Together with our matching grant, their $12,500 becomes $25,000,” said Peter Zierhut, Vice President of Haas Automation, a local employer with a history of community support. “ThomasFireHelp continues to do an exceptional job assisting survivors and their families, as the community reestablishes itself. This grant and other donations allow ThomasFireHelp to continue their work as the safety net under the safety net – helping our most vulnerable community members.”
Emily Barany, co-founder of ThomasFireHelp said, “It has almost been a year since the fire, and our neighbors still need support. We are continually evolving our work to meet the changing needs in our community, which is only possible with the support of our partners – individual donors offering a couple dollars a month, and large contributors like the Ventura County Community Foundation and the Gene Haas Foundation.”
“Fire and slide survivors have no idea how much their community wants to step up and support them – we bridge this gap every day,” Barany said of the ThomasFireHelp platform, which connects one person who needs help with another person in the community who has that help to give. “It’s like online dating, but for disaster recovery.”
To support the work of ThomasFireHelp, visit https://www.thomasfirehelp.