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14

Nov, 2018

Rocklin PONY spearheading efforts for wildfire victims

According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the current Camp Fire in Butte County, about 80 miles north of Sacramento, California, has now burned 130,000 acres. More than 5,600 personnel are fighting the blaze, which has destroyed more than 7,600 homes and 260 commercial buildings. At least 48 people have died in the wildfire that has burned through the town of Paradise with shocking speed, making the Camp Fire the deadliest wildfire in California state history.

According to Rocklin PONY League President Shaun Baland, many of the displaced in Paradise have flocked to the city of Rocklin to be with friends or relatives at this time. He said the effects of the devastation have hit their area head-on, and while everyone has rebuilding their homes on their minds, it's their immediate needs that need taken care of.

"They don’t have anything," said Baland. "A lot of them left with nothing. They have nothing but the clothes that they were wearing. We’ve had to go out and buy tooth brushes, soap and deodorant for a few people. It’s just real tough to get through the first few days, when you don’t have anything with you."

Baland, his 25-person Rocklin PONY board of directors and members from neighboring leagues in the area have taken it upon themselves to go beyond the call and raise money that will be used to purchase gift cards that can be used for supplies for the evacuees. 

“At first, we were just receiving gift cards locally and people were dropping them off with us," said Baland. "It was just easier to set up the GoFundMe to bring that money in and then go buy gift cards. We set a goal of $10,000. We’re at $2,000 and it’s only been out for two days. We’re just hoping it spreads and people share it through social media so we can meet our goal."

If you are interested in supporting Rocklin PONY in its effort to assist evacuees of the Camp Fire in Butte County, please visit https://www.gofundme.com/pony-for-paradise or contact Shaun at [email protected]  

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