October 2, 2020 | 11:45 a.m.
Springfield, Mo. “In one word: devastating,” Jim Mattix said, describing the charred scene in California. Jim is the lead pastor of Northeast Assembly of God in Fresno, California, and one of the many who have been affected by the fires on the West Coast. Northeast Assembly has two campuses, both of which have found themselves in the path of the Creek Fire. This fire has already consumed more than 309,000 acres of California land.
Jim recalled the sky changing colors and the air quality reaching record lows as he received notice that the evacuation warning had extended to his community. It wasn’t long before he began looking for ways to help others in his area who were affected by the fires. Jim turned to Convoy of Hope’s Disaster Services team, who dispatched a tractor-trailer full of food, water, and other supplies to his location. Within 24 hours of receiving aid, Jim began distributing resources to his community. He estimates that Northeast Assembly of God has connected with and provided relief to 50-100 people per day since Convoy of Hope answered his call for help.
“Every story is just as heartbreaking as the previous. You’d think we would develop a callous to it by now, but that is not the case. Each one breaks your heart,” he says.
Despite the adversity he and his community have faced, Jim did not pass up the chance to applaud the mentality he has seen the survivors in his area maintain. “Those who are genuinely in need are constantly saying to us, ‘I only need a little. I don’t want to take too much and someone else be without.’ That to us has been the most humbling experience.”
Jim went out of his way to express a great amount of gratitude for the help he has received from Convoy of Hope: “I believe Convoy of Hope is the greatest disaster relief, feeding initiative, women’s empowerment, and community rebuilding organization in the world. I don’t say that lightly. I have seen and experienced Convoy’s response firsthand and know this to be true.”
Convoy of Hope continues to provide disaster relief services to those who have been affected by the West Coast fires. To donate to this response, click here.
September 25, 2020 | 8:50 a.m.
Springfield, Mo. 2020 has been the most active fire season on record for the West Coast. More than 5,000,000 acres have burned in California, Oregon, and Washington so far, and more than 18,000 fires have been detected to date. To put that in perspective, less than 10,000 fires were detected in 2015 and less than 4,000 were detected in 2001.
In California alone, more than 17,000 firefighters have been attempting to control the fires. Unfortunately, meteorologists are predicting a third heatwave to develop as October begins.
Convoy of Hope has served more than 23,000 people along the West Coast with 15 loads of supplies. That equates to more than half a million pounds of water, food, blankets, and other products. As fires continue to burn, we are committed to helping those affected as much as we can for as long as we can.
September 17, 2020 | 4:40 p.m.
Springfield, Mo. As fires continue to rage across the West Coast, Convoy of Hope has deployed our fleet and brought dozens of loads of relief supplies to communities in need. Along with our church partners throughout the region, we are serving evacuation centers and neighborhoods where people are coming back after fires have passed through their communities.
This is a developing situation, so we will update this page as we have more information. As always, you can donate to this response by clicking here.
September 15, 2020 | 3:40 p.m.
Springfield, Mo. Wildfires continue to burn along the West Coast. At least 25 people have died in California from the fires, at least 10 people have been killed in Oregon, and a child was killed by the fires in Washington. According to IQAir, a group which tracks global air quality, the West Coast now has the worst air quality in the world right now.
Convoy of Hope is still sending tractor-trailers filled with water and supplies to help those who have either lost homes or don’t have access to food and supplies because of the fires. Here is an update from Convoy of Hope President Hal Donaldson.
September 10, 2020 | 3:00 p.m.
Springfield, Mo. Convoy of Hope’s response to the fires along the West Coast is underway. Having already supplied blankets and water in the area, we are sending additional trucks of food, water, and other supplies to the affected area.
Numerous fires in California, Washington, and Oregon are still uncontained and are threatening populated areas. At least seven deaths have been reported, and millions of acres have been burned by the fires.
Our local partners will be rapidly distributing supplies to those who have been affected or displaced by the fires.