In the wake of the catastrophic California wildfires, it’s clear the state is in need of support to recover from the disasters. The devastation that curses California calls for action. Whether you live in California or not, you can make a positive contribution to the relief efforts. Here’s how you can get involved and help those inflicted find relief. 

1. Donate Money to Charities helping those affected by the fires

Any donation amount you are able to give makes a difference. Whether it’s 5 dollars or 500 dollars, you are helping those in need. The California Fire Foundation is actively providing aid to firefighters, communities, and victims both for immediate relief and long-term recovery efforts. Donations made to the American Red Cross will be put to good use as well helping residents all across Northern and Southern California recover and return to a state of normalcy. They are helping victims reconnect with loved ones and rebuild their lives. The California Community Foundation’s Wildlife Relief Fund is using donation money to fund long-term recovery efforts. It’s a great organization that is committed to helping California recover, grow, and change for the better.

2. Help rescue pets & animals displaced by the fires

Many pets have lost their families, and are in need of new homes. Make a difference in an animal’s life by adopting a cat or dog. By adopting a single animal, you are making room in a shelter for another, saving yet another life.  If you live in California, check out an Adopt and Shop location to meet some friendly pets who were pulled from shelters around California. Of course, many lifestyles do not allow for such a long term, life-changing commitment. You can always consider fostering an animal, which means providing a temporary home. It’s a great way to save a life, and gain an unforgettable experience for yourself. If you want to get involved but you can’t bring a pet home, consider volunteering at a local shelter. Even if you’re nowhere near California, your impact radiates out, and you are helping animals in need.

3. Open up your home

If you live in California and are willing to open up your home, Airbnb created an Open Homes program dedicated to helping victims find free, temporary shelters. All you need to become a host is an entire house or apartment, a comfortable bed, basic amenities & toiletries, and availability for 2 or more days in a row. Everyone in need of housing is screened to ensure that they are true victims. Giving to those in need is such a rewarding experience, especially when you make a direct impact. 

4. Urge politicians to take climate change & the environment seriously 

Use your voice to help the planet! Sign this petition urging California politicians to take action on climate change to prevent future catastrophes. Climate change is inevitable unless we can collectively act against it! For those of us not from California, it’s still important we speak out for change. Additionally, consider getting involved with your local Sierra Club. This organization is committed to the fight for environmental and social justice, and they offer ways you can easily take action where you live. Through the Sierra Club, you will be able to stay informed on what’s happening in the government in regards to the environment, so you’ll never miss an opportunity to influence positive change! 

5. Commit yourself to the fight against climate change

Climate change is causing natural disasters to become more frequent, and more harmful. The California wildfires are a sad reminder of what our future may look like if we sit around and do nothing. I challenge you to put the planet first. Choose to be more conscious about your waste, and decide that you want your actions to help the earth, not harm it. Fortunately, here at Zoe Elle, we have all the information you need to live a more sustainable, eco-friendly lifestyle!