Hi, my name is Thom and I'm the owner/co-founder of Iron & Resin. I love Ventura and it's surrounding communities. I've been here most of my life, raising a family and basing my business and brand here. The fires that have affected our communities have been unlike anything I've ever seen. This fire season will surely go down as one of the worst in our state's history. The damage and destruction reaches well beyond our own local Ventura community, which was devastated with the loss of over 800 homes and displacement of thousands of families fleeing the fires.
Laura Fullilove has volunteered to be our financial administrator for this campaign. On Wednesday, December 7th, 2017 Laura and I evacuated our horses and animals and fled our home and ranch, each with a bag in hand and our animals loaded. Throughout the night the firefighters made a vigorous stand to protect our home and land. That evening, they were able to save our property despite limited resources and the overwhelming size of the Thomas Fire. After the immediate danger had past, the firefighters moved on to defend other homes. It was due to the generosity of neighbors and strangers, who showed up armed with tools, chainsaws and bulldozers that we were able to continue to protect our land throughout the week, as the fire returned again and again, threatening our property. This experience inspired us to begin a campaign to aid our community members. It has become an acute moment for neighbors to help neighbors to ensure that no one else has to go through crisis alone.
Almost all of us at Iron & Resin were personally affected by the fires; we are fortunate that none of us lost our homes. Many in our community have not been so lucky. We've had so many people reach out to us with a desire to help, and we wanted to create a space for people to come together. With a large social and professional network to activate relief efforts, in addition to local facilities and intel; we are poised to provide direct aid to those most impacted. We are coordinating a relief effort called Help California (#helpcalifornia) to bring relief to those families who have lost their homes and are facing the monumental task of rebuilding their lives.
We currently have volunteers in the field canvassing the areas that have been hit the hardest by this fire. They are assessing the needs of families, to determine what items or services we can provide to give them even a small amount of relief. In addition to the on the ground efforts, we have also created this GoFundMe account to raise funds that will be used to meet these needs. Laura, the Help California financial administrator, will be directly responsible for helping coordinate the purchase of supplies to support the volunteers on the ground and relief items that will go to those families most affected by the fires. 100% of the Help California proceeds will be used to meet these needs.
We're in the process of setting up a distribution center and temporary command post at The Iron & Resin Garage in Ventura, where people will be able to pick up tools, supplies and basic clothing necessities. We'll also be stocking the Iron & Resin trailer with donations and setting up temporary outpost locations to distribute relief items. Currently, we are looking for brands or retailers who are willing to donate some of these items, while also raising funds to purchase what we can't get through donations and to be able to help provide families meet their basic needs.
There are a number of ways you can help. The easiest is to simply donate money. Any amount helps. We'll be updating this site daily with how the funds are being used and sharing the stories of those families it is helping. If you're a brand, retailer or equipment rental service, we're also looking for donations of new (unused) goods and supplies, as well as demolition equipment and tools.
Below is a LIVE FEED of purchases made by HELP CA & Laura F to support relief efforts:
- Carpentry tools
- Impact power drills
- Generators and/or power stations
- Protective gear - eyewear, suits and boots
- Gasoline / Diesel - full cans for generators
- Demo tools - shovels, sledge hammers, contractor bags, hammers, chain saws
- Fire Extinguishers
We'll be updating this list daily, as our field teams come back with intel and other needs. If you have any of the above items available for short term use or to donate, please bring them to Iron & Resin in downtown Ventura, between 11a-7p @ 324 E Main St, Ventura, CA 93001.
Finally, we'd love to have you join us and volunteer. We'll need help sorting and distributing relief items, canvassing affected neighborhoods to assess needs and assisting families with cleanup and recovery efforts. If you’d like to volunteer please contact Taylor@ironandresin.com
If you or someone you know has lost their home, we'd love to hear from you. Let us know what you need and how we can help. Together we make a difference.
Please visit our GoFundMe here for more information.