On September 12, 2015, a fire broke out at 1:00 pm near Cobb, California. By 6:30 pm, the fire had spread and burned 10,000 acres. Three days later when it was fully contained, it had burned more than 76,000 acres, killed four people, and destroyed nearly 2,000 buildings, including 1,322 homes.
This fire became known as the Valley Fire of Lake County, and at the time, it was the third most destructive fire in California history. The Lake County community was suffering, and this is when the Kiwanis Club of Lakeport stepped in. With the help of a Disaster Assistance Grant from the Foundation, these Kiwanians began to rebuild their community.
Lakeport Kiwanians provided school supplies and clothing to children at Cobb Elementary School who had lost their homes and belongings to the fire, ensuring that they would be prepared for the new school year and the cold weather that was sure to come. They also planted trees in fire-ravaged areas and distributed 2,500 seedling trees to their community. Jim Harvey, a club member, along with CAL FIRE, taught gardening classes to children to teach them how to plant their new trees and to encourage the regrowth of their affected community.
Natural disasters are unpredictable and devastating. However, as demonstrated by these selfless and courageous Kiwanians, if we join together, we can rebuild during these times of need.
If you’re inspired by the Kiwanis Club of Lakeport and are interested in assisting a disaster-affected community, click here to learn more about our Disaster Assistance grants and how we can help fund your club’s next service project.