Third Stage of Fire Relief in Lakeport

Third Stage of Fire Relief in Lakeport

by Alethea Easton, Member, St. John’s Episcopal Church, Lakeport

Saint John’s would like to thank the churches in the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California, and abroad, for their continuing support for the Saint John’s, Lakeport Fire Fund. We continue to reach families whose on-going needs are numerous and challenging. It is a proof of our witness to Christ that as Episcopalians we continue to contribute to families whose lives are far from getting back to normal. What is wonderful is that like the miracle of the loaves and fishes, when people have asked for help the resources have been made available. We have been able to say “yes” to each case so far.

We are now in the third and longest stage of help. Immediate needs have been taken care of, food has been provided for each family in the Middletown Unified School District who lost their homes, as well as other community members in Middletown, Cobb and Hidden Valley. Much of this assistance reached these families at Christmas time. But six months have passed. Unemployment and FEMA stipends are ending. Konocti Harbor Inn, which has housed over 50 families, will close its doors June 1st. We now are connecting with families who are finding obstacles with rebuilding; needing assistance with rental deposits as they are finding the homes they have been living in are being sold or rented to family members of the owners; and the long-term effects of loss of income. Businesses and places of employment have been burned and not reopened. Restaurants have closed. In the last month, we have assisted with car repairs, DMV registration fees, replacement of workplace tools, gas cards to allow students to finish the year out at their home schools, septic tank repair, and a request to help with fees for college admission applications.

We know that there are people whom we have not reached. Many families have reluctantly left the area, but senior citizens, people without connections to the schools, or those who do not live at Konocti Harbor Inn, have been difficult to reach. Our hope is that the good news will spread, and we can assist as many of our brothers and sisters who still are struggling to get back on their feet in southern Lake County.


1 comment (Add your own)

1. Daniel Green wrote:
Thanks for keeping us informed, and thank you for all that you and the other people of St. John's, Lakeport have done and are doing to minister to those displaced by last year's fires.

Wed, May 4, 2016 @ 3:17 PM

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