Montana Wildfires & Hurricane Harvey and Irma Relief Information
If you are a student, student organization, faculty or staff member who is coordinating
any efforts, please email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can publicize the information here. Let us know how others can get involved
in your efforts.
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PLEASE NOTE: This is for information only. We are aware this is not an exhaustive list, please contact us if you have information to add. Please research organizations and best ways for you to get involved.
Credit: Montana Public Radio
So far this year, more than 1,500 fires have burned 937 square miles in Montana. They've burned through homes and ranches and forced evacuations across Montana. The fires have already drained the state's firefighting reserve fund and an emergency fund, and there is no end in sight for the hot, dry weather that the fires are feeding on. Several relief organizations are accepting donations to help Montanans displaced by the fires and smoke. Here's how you can help:
- The Missoula United Way has set up a fund to aid those affected by the Rice Ridge Fire near Seeley Lake, and a fund for evacuees from the Lolo Peak Fire. You can contact the Missoula United Way at 406-549-6104.
- The 406 Family Aid Foundation was formed "To aid persons and their families in Western Montana who are experiencing financial hardship caused by unforeseen illness, complications of a previous illness, loss in a family or natural disaster.” They're accepting donations for Lolo Peak Fire evacuees at www.406familyaidfoundation.org.
- Garfield County Fire Foundation Relief Fund has been set up to help victims of the Lodgepole Complex, Montana's largest fire this year, which burned nearly over 270,000 acres in Eastern Montana. You can donate online at https://fundly.com/garfield-county-fire-foundation. Checks can be made to Garfield County Fire Foundation c/o Garfield County Bank PO Box 6, Jordan, MT 59337 (406-557-2201) or send to Circle c/o Redwater Valley Bank, PO Box 60, Circle, MT 59215 (406-485-4782).
- Red Crosses throughout the state are also setting up shelters and taking donations for those in need.You can donate online at http://www.redcross.org/local/montana or call 800-272-6668.
- If you or someone you know is affected by a fire, the Montana Department of Agriculture has launched the Agriculture Fire and Drought Assistance Hotline. This hotline will
connect those affected with local resources and programs to help them get through
this tough time.
The hotline can also answer questions about hay and feed donations, livestock, fencing and transportation. 1-844-515-1571.
- Pi Kappa Alpha is hosting a fundraiser for Garfield County Fire Foundation, which
will directly support fire fighting and relief throughout our great state of Montana.
We will have a Dunk Tank on the mall so students can Dunk our members for a small fee of $5 for 2 tosses, or $20 for 10 tosses. All proceeds will go to Garfield County Fire Foundation, and help
- Montana Nonprofit Association put together a resource of local organization accepting donations for wildfire relief: http://www.mtnonprofit.org/wildfires/
Hurricane Harvey Relief InformationIf you are interested in helping out with the relief efforts:
Credit: Corporation for National and Community Service
- Do not self-deployas a volunteer to a disaster area. Food, water, shelter, and transportation are at a premium and the first priority is making sure that first responders and local residents can get what they need.
- Sign up before you show up. If you are able to volunteer, make sure to find an organization and sign up. Capacity is stretched during disasters and you need to make sure that you can be utilized.
- Donate cash. What most communities need is cash, not things. Find a reputable organization that
is supporting the disaster response and recovery and contribute. They can buy what
they need and not have to worry about sorting and storing donations, especially when
storage facilities may be damaged or being used to shelter people. American Red Cross online donation form.
- Here are some national disaster response organizations you may want to consider.
- The NationalService.gov/Harvey is updated regularly as new information about volunteer opportunities and other needs develop.
- The American Red Cross is requesting volunteers who are skilled in shelter operations to support Hurricane Harvey response efforts in Texas. To learn about opportunities with the American Red Cross visit our blog.
- More opportunities to volunteer may be available with Texas Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster. You can find a list of those and more at NationalService.gov/Harvey. There you can also find information on where to seek assistance, should you, or friends and family be impacted by the storm’s effects.
Hurricane Irma and Maria Relief Information
If you are interested in helping out with the relief efforts:
Credit: Corporation for National and Community Service
As Hurricane Irma approaches, AmeriCorps and Senior Corps are preparing to help with shelter operations and volunteer mobilization and recovery when the time is right.
Here are some reminders about what to do when disaster strikes:
- Do not self-deploy as a volunteer to a disaster area. We know you want to help, but food, water, shelter,
and transportation are at a premium and the first priority is making sure that first
responders and local residents get what they need.
- Sign up before you show up. If you are able to volunteer, make sure to find an organization and sign up. Capacity
is stretched during disasters and you need to make sure that you can be utilized.
- Donate cash. What most communities need is cash, not things. Find a reputable organization that is supporting the disaster response and recovery and contribute. They can buy what they need and not have to worry about sorting and storing donations, especially when storage facilities may be damaged or being used to shelter people. Here are some national disaster response organizations you may want to consider.
NCS coordinates locally to ensure all needs are identified from state, regional, and federal emergency partners, including FEMA and American Red Cross, and Volunteer Florida, the Governor-appointed state service commission responsible for implementing national service programs in Florida.
Although the need is great, and desire to help strong in times of disaster, it is important to avoid donating material goods or self-deploying to volunteer. The first priority is to make sure communities are safe and public officials and disaster relief organizations have had an opportunity to assess the damage and identify what the specific needs are. Once that happens, it is the generous spirit of residents, nonprofits organizations, faith-based organizations, community-based organizations, private sector partners, and governmental agencies and partners working in a coordinated effort that will most effectively and efficiently help Floridians recovery from Hurricane Irma.