While firefighters sought to squelch the deadly wildfires across thousands of acres of Southern California, the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee’s Disaster Response Services (DRS) began planning deployment of trained volunteers to the area.
“We are coordinating possible follow-up work with evacuees to help assess their losses, their eligibility for aid, and their available resources,” said Bill Adams, director of DRS.
CRWRC-DRS rebuilt homes in low-income neighborhoods in the East Hills near San Diego in response to wildfires in 2003, when 4,000 homes were destroyed. Work teams rebuilt homes in and around the Crest and Ramona areas for about a year.
CRWRC’s expertise in domestic disaster is in long-term recovery. It maintains a network of several thousand multi-denominational trained and experienced volunteers from the United States and Canada.
“When we make a commitment to a recovery organization, we send in teams of about 20 people every three weeks over an extended period to complete reconstruction,” Adams said. “Our teams are self-contained, with tools, equipment, management, cooks, and enough skilled workers to get the job done.”
Christian Reformed and Reformed Churches in southern California reported that dozens of church members from Escondido and Rancho Bernardo were evacuated. One family lost their home.
If you wish to assist with CRWRC-DRS response to the California wildfires, go to www.crwrc.org and click on “Get Involved.”
CRWRC is also accepting online financial donations, designated “California Wildfires 2007.” Or you can mail a check similarly designated to CRWRC at 2850 Kalamazoo Avenue SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49560-0600. To donate by telephone, call 1-800-55-CRWRC.