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How to help Shasta and Trinity County fire victims

A devastating fire is raging through Northern California, threatening the lives and property of thousands of people in and around Redding. Here is how you can help.

Major Wildfire Spreads To 28,000 Acres, Threatens Redding, CA Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The Carr Fire broke out on Monday after a vehicle blew a tire, sparking dry grass nearby. It has been growing ever since, burning through smaller towns in its way. Late last night, the fire jumped the Sacramento river and is now threatening the city of Redding, which has a population of nearly one hundred thousand people, roughly a third of whom have had to evacuate so far.

Fire officials said they’d never seen a fire like this. Normally, the Sacramento River provides a natural barrier to help firefighters protect Redding, however with walls of flame as high as 100 feet and high speed winds, some being generated by the fire itself, there was little that could be done aside from evacuating residents.

Last night, the Carr Fire was reported as 6% contained. This morning, it was 3% and double the size. With Redding expecting heat in the triple digits for the foreseeable future, this could possibly get a lot worse before it gets better.

It’s terrible, this feeling of helplessness during a catastrophic fire. Residents of the Bay Area know this feeling all too well after last year’s deadly fires in Sonoma and Napa Counties that destroyed thousands of homes and claimed dozens of lives.

But you can help. I’ll be compiling links to resources for those who would like to help or who would like to stay informed about this.

Reminder: If you want to donate to a food bank or an evacuation shelter, please call ahead and ask what they need. Or donate money instead. Material donations are great, but while the crisis is still urgent, aid workers will not have the time to sort through it all. Also, if you want to volunteer, call ahead and see if they need volunteers.

  • The Sacramento Bee has list of organizations you can donate who are helping with relief effort, including United Way, the Red Cross, a link to find local food shelters and one for health workers to register to volunteer.
  • If you live in Shasta County, opt-in to SHASCOM-911 alerts to be notified when there are updates.
  • Here is a verified GoFundMe fundraising partnership with Tri-Counties Bank.
  • You can donate $10 to the Red Cross directly by texting “REDCROSS” to 90999.
  • The local Redding ABC affiliate KRCR, who was evacuated mid-broadcast last night, has a news stream with updates periodically, as necessary, including evacuation orders.
  • Here is the National Fire Situational Awareness map of the area, for those who want to keep track of the progress of the fire. If you are local to the area, however, do not rely on this as it is not up to the minute.
  • Here is the Cal Fire page for this fire.
  • Here is a Google map of the current evacuation areas.
  • Here is a list of the evacuation areas, road closures and evacuation centers. There are no phone numbers for these centers, but I will try to find them throughout the day to update this for those who are able to call and bring donations.
  • Donate to the Haven Humane Society here:

I know this information is all over the internet, but it doesn’t hurt to get it out here as well. If you come across any other ways to help that I’ve missed, please post it in the comments; I’ll be updating the list periodically throughout this ongoing crisis.

And to those of you in the affected areas:

The entire staff and community of McCovey Chronicles send our thoughts and prayers to you in this difficult time. Be safe, follow evacuation orders if necessary and let us know what you need.