Oct 7, 2017

Getting assistance after the wildfires

If you or your family need financial assistance because of the fires, and/or resource and referral to other relief services, like mental health counseling, housing and legal assistance and more, please read the below information.

All services are free of charge and confidential, and available regardless of the immigration status, age, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religion of those who need support.

All services are available in English and Spanish.

 

LOST WAGES AND/OR HOUSING

The Napa Fire Recovery Center is offering re-housing services for those who were made homeless as a result of the October wildfires, predominantly uninsured renters; and providing financial assistance to people who may not have lost their homes, but have nonetheless encountered economic hardship because of the temporary slow-down of the viticulture and hospitality economy in the region.  Re-housing services and financial assistance are available to individuals who live or work in Napa County; earn up to 120 percent of Area Median Income; and have not received sufficient support from private insurance, government aid programs or other sources.   To qualify for help, people will be asked to provide documents to substantiate their fire-related losses, such as proof of residency at a home or apartment that appears on the county’s list of red-tagged properties.

The Napa Fire Recovery Center is located at 3299 Claremont Way, Suite 8, in Napa.  The Center is staffed by three nonprofit organizations with expertise in re-housing, case management and individual assistance programs.  Abode Services and On the Move (which includes McPherson and Philips neighborhood family resource centers), are housed in the Claremont Way location, and UpValley Family Centers  (707.942.6206) is operating a satellite branch of the Center at its established sites in Calistoga and St. Helena.   Fire survivors in need of assistance are encouraged to schedule an appointment by calling (707) 363-8390, or by sending an email to info@napaefa.org.  The Napa Fire Recovery Center is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, and will operate until June 30, 2018 unless changing circumstances warrant otherwise.

The nonprofits staffing the Center will coordinate their financial assistance programs with other charitable groups in the Valley involved in distributing cash aid to fire survivors, to ensure equity and avoid duplication of benefits.

At Napa Valley Community Foundation, we urged all local residents who have lost property or income due to the October wildfires to seek government assistance while it was still available.  To be eligible for cash assistance from the Fund, residents will be asked to demonstrate that they have first applied for government disaster aid, if they are qualified to do so.  Please click here for downloadable information in English and Spanish.

About Area Median Income

In the first hours and days following a disaster, everyone who needs charitable assistance deserves to receive it, regardless of their level of income or wealth.  That’s why emergency shelters take care of evacuees from wealthy neighborhoods and low-income neighborhoods alike.  However, as time passes and days turn into weeks, IRS rules require charities like NVCF to assess the financial resources survivors may have at their disposal to assist in their own recovery – such as private insurance, savings or access to government disaster aid dollars.  For this reason, and because NVCF believes strongly in the equitable distribution of disaster aid resources, eligibility for cash aid and re-housing programs from the Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund is currently capped at 120 percent of Area Median Income (AMI).  Please see page 9 of the document available for download here to learn more about AMI for families of different sizes in Napa County.

 

LOST HOMES & PROPERTY

Napa Valley Community Foundation is supporting United Policyholders (UP), a nonprofit insurance consumer advocacy group with extensive disaster-related experience, to provide workshops and individualized assistance at no-cost to Napa County homeowners or renters whose homes were damaged or destroyed in the fires. Resources and individual assistance can be found on UP’s website.  The next workshop date for Napa County will be announced soon.

 

SMALL BUSINESS RECOVERY

The Foundation is currently considering a program that would make grants or loans available to assist small businesses in Napa County that suffered economic injury as a result of the Fires.  Please email Terence Mulligan at terence@napavalleycf.org if you’d like to receive updates about this potential program.  In the meantime, please note that small business owners have until July 12, 2018 to apply to the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.  Any assistance the Foundation provides to help the small business community will require applicants to have first applied to the EIDL program.

 

OTHER ASSISTANCE

Please visit these nonprofits’ websites below for information about specific relief and recovery services available and updates:

Aldea

Bay Area Legal Aid (BayLegal)

Boys and Girls Clubs of Napa Valley

Center for Volunteer and Nonprofit Leadership (CVNL)

Community Action Napa Valley (CANV)

Cope Family Center

Fair Housing Napa Valley (FHNV)

Humane Society of Napa County

Mentis

NEWS

Ole Health

On the Move

ParentsCAN

Puertas Abiertas Community Resource Center

Salvation Army

UpValley Family Centers of Napa County

 

About the Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund

The Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund is managed by Napa Valley Community Foundation and was established with a $10 million lead gift from Napa Valley Vintners following the 2014 South Napa Earthquake.  After all phases of quake-related relief, recovery and rebuilding programs concluded in 2016, the Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund had a balance of approximately $2.5 million, which was the starting point for current relief and recovery efforts for the Napa Fire Complex.  Since the Fund was re-activated on October 10, 2017, nearly $14 million has been contributed by 20,000 individual, corporate and foundation donors in California, the US and abroad.  Growers and vintners in Napa Valley have contributed significantly to assist those affected by the October wildfires, and their generosity has inspired their many friends, customers and partners to get involved, as well.  Thus far, $4 million has been distributed from the Fund to provide 15,000 fire survivors with services and nearly 1,900 households with direct cash assistance.  The most recent grant approved by the Fund, of up to $3 million, will support the Napa Fire Recovery Center and its clients.

 

 

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