August 23, 2007
South Lake Tahoe, CA As the days after the fire add up so too are the donations from South Shore businesses and organizations being made to the Angora Fire Fund (AFF) originally known as Locals for Locals. Among the local businesses demonstrating generosity: Lake Tahoe Development Co. ($75,000), Embassy Suites ($10,000), Ross Dress for Less ($2,000), Tahoe Sand & Gravel, Inc. ($1,000), Feldman Shaw ($1,000), All About Tahoe Realty ($500) and Mountain Girl, Inc. ($532).
Angora Fire Fund Board Member, “B” Gorman shared the following. “Several local businesses have worked to include their employees and or customers in their fundraising efforts. This is a wonderful way to keep the needs of the fire survivors at the forefront of our minds and build community spirit as we work towards long term recovery and rebuilding. A great example of this is the effort undertaken at Lakeland Village where Lakeland and their parent company Premier Resorts put together a matching program whereby if a company employee made a donation Premier would match. The employees donated $1587 and the company matched that amount and thus the total contribution to the Angora Fire Fund was $3174.”
“In addition to corporate checks and individual donors there continue to be events taking place throughout the Basin hosted by a variety of organizations stepping in to help the survivors. This week we’ve received over $5,400 from the benefit concert hosted by Harrah’s (more to follow) and $400 from John Denver’s Windstar California Connection event held at Tahoe Valley Campground this past weekend. There have been several other events publicized as benefiting the Angora Fire survivors.”
“The fund was set up to receive and distribute funds locally so that clubs, corporations and individuals would have a place to put their donations without worrying about whether a large percentage of the contributions would be spent on administrative costs.” Board Member Wendy David said. “The fund does not employ any staff nor does it pay for office space. A recent example of an organization moving their funds to the AFF was South Lake Tahoe’s City Council voting on Tuesday August 21st to forward $6,681 received by the City to the Lake Tahoe Angora Fire Fund.”
“As of August 17th the sum of funds banked was $252,352 and checks totaling $71,000 have been mailed to fire survivors to assist them in beginning to rebuild their lives. The Board of eleven members meets every Thursday afternoon to review applications and mails out checks on Fridays.” added Board Member John Packer. “Another round of checks will be mailed on Friday August 24th.”
“The Angora Fire Fund is currently accepting applications and distributing funds to fire survivors who lost their primary residence. Upon verification of residency funds are being distributed up to maximum of $1,000 per household to assist with immediate needs. Households that received $500 of the AFF money via the Sierra Community Church may be eligible to receive up to another $500 based upon their immediate needs. Fire survivors who have immediate needs must submit their applications for this round of funding prior to August 30th. Applications are available at either the California or Nevada Visitor Centers or at any Board Member’s Business. Board Members are listed on www.helptahoe.com and the application is also available on the website. Applications can be mailed to the post office box or given to any Board Member in a sealed envelope. Information about the specific applicants is considered confidential and will not be made public.”
A second distribution round for long term needs will commence this autumn based upon available resources. A new application is not necessary to be considered for additional funds.
“We are optimistic that the fund will grow for that second round based upon promises received from several sources and inquiries from a number of organizations. Additionally, the Chamber of Commerce did a mailing to all of its members last week offering them the opportunity to contribute to the community’s healing by helping the survivors directly.” David continued. We believe additional organizations will utilize the infrastructure established by the Angora Fire Fund “Locals for Locals” as they deal with the inherent challenges of trying to establish criteria and distribute funds. Equally as important, this would eliminate the need for families to complete multiple applications on top of the myriad forms they are required to do for insurance claims and rebuilding. In order to help us provide meaningful assistance we are encouraging those who have not yet made a donation to please consider donating to the Fund. On behalf of the Board and all of the survivors we thank those who have already generously donated.”
Donations are being accepted to the Angora Fire Fund in the following ways: online at www.helptahoe.com ; in person at any US Bank or mail to the Angora Fire Fund (Locals for Locals) PO Box 17640, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96151.
For further information please visit the website or contact any of the board members.