SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Sept. 16, 2015) — Walmart and the Walmart Foundation today announced they have committed to provide $200,000 of cash and in-kind support for relief efforts surrounding wildfires in Northern California, Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.
In Northern California, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have been engaged in relief efforts since wildfires started burning in the region several weeks ago. Current support efforts are targeting the Butte fire in Amador and Calaveras counties and the Valley fire in Lake Sonoma and Napa counties. In addition to supplies and other in-kind support that has been given to first responders and local shelters, Walmart stores in Jackson and Clearlake are also actively working to meet the needs of the communities impacted by these wildfires.
In Clearlake, the Walmart store has been serving as an evacuation point for the community. In response, the store has remained open 24 hours to ensure the community can access needed supplies and has provided continuous support with donations of food, water, cots, blankets, hygiene products and other necessities. Walmart stores in the surrounding communities affected by the wildfires are responding in kind.
The Clearlake Walmart has also donated supplies and merchandise to multiple evacuation sites, including the Salvation Army food truck, the local senior center and Moose Lodge, and an evacuation site in Kelseyville, among others.
“In good times and bad, Walmart is committed to helping families across Northern California whenever they need us,” said Chester Gray, regional general manager for Walmart. “Not only are our Associates in the affected regions providing much-needed assistance wherever they can, but we’re providing even more support to communities coping with these natural disasters through cash donations from the Walmart Foundation and in-kind donations from Walmart.”
The Butte fire has burned nearly 72,000 acres and has destroyed at least 135 homes since it began on Sept. 9. More than 10,000 people living and working in the area around Jackson have been displaced. The Valley fire, situated in Middletown and Cobb in Lake County, has burned more than 67,000 acres since it began on Sept. 12. Nearly 600 homes have been destroyed, 17,000 people have been evacuated and one person has died. Nearly 9,000 structured are still threatened
"The Red Cross is working feverishly around the clock to support those impacted by these devastating fires," said Justin Matheson, American Red Cross Capital Region Board Chair. "We’re forever grateful for the generous support that Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are providing. The supplies and the financial contributions help more families find support and relief from these disasters at a time when it’s needed most."
In addition to supporting their communities and customers affected by the wildfires throughout the multi-state region, Walmart has also provided Disaster Displacement Assistance to 160 associates. This assistance has been provided to associates that have been evacuated from their homes or have experienced significant home damage or loss as a result of the wildfires. It is intended to help associates and their families get out of harm’s way and cover some of the personal items needed during their evacuation such as food, personal care items, fuel, etc.
About Philanthropy at Walmart
By using our strengths to help others, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation create opportunities for people to live better every day. We have stores in 28 countries, employing more than 2.2 million associates and doing business with thousands of suppliers who, in turn, employ millions of people. We are helping people live better by accelerating upward job mobility and economic development for the retail workforce; addressing hunger and making healthier, more sustainably-grown food a reality; and building strong communities where we operate and inspiring our associates to give back. Whether it is helping to lead the fight against hunger in the United States with $2 billion in cash and in-kind donations or supporting Women’s Economic Empowerment through a series of grants totaling $10 million to the Women in Factories training program in Bangladesh, China, India and Central America, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are not only working to tackle key social issues, we are also collaborating with others to inspire solutions for long-lasting systemic change. To learn more about Walmart’s giving, visit www.foundation.walmart.com.
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