by Victoria Picón
In response to the devastating wildfires in the Big Country, the CFA has established three fire relief funds for Eastland County, Coleman County, and the Big Country. People who want to support the fire relief efforts can donate to these funds which will then be dispersed as grants to volunteer fire departments fighting the fires as well as nonprofits and churches serving those who need immediate assistance. These grants will not only serve the immediate needs of the Big Country but will later support the long-term recovery process during the weeks and months following the fires.
Volunteer fire departments are also receiving grants from the CFA’s special grant cycle that was initiated at the beginning of 2022—before the March wildfires even occurred. Volunteer fire departments intend to use grant money to repair fire trucks and damaged equipment, and to purchase new tires and personal protective equipment (PPE).
On Monday, March 21, the CFA granted $10,000 from the Eastland County Fire Relief Fund to the United Rescue Alliance (URA), a nonprofit organization leading coordinated relief efforts in Eastland County. The URA has crews actively assessing the needs of the Eastland community. With this initial $10k the URA is meeting the urgent needs of fire victims, and have already helped more than twenty families thus far by providing them $100 gift cards to purchase immediate necessities such as food, clothing, and other essentials.
As of Friday, March 25, the CFA has raised a total of $264,323 for all fire relief funds: $30,790 for the Big Country Fire Relief Fund, $55,891 for the Coleman County Disaster Relief Fund, and $177,640 for the Eastland County Fire Relief Fund thanks to the support of the community. The Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation has also donated a total of $20k to the relief efforts: $10k to the Eastland County Fire Relief Fund and $10k to the Big Country Fire Relief Fund.
Our team is actively communicating with crews on the ground in the affected areas to determine where funds are needed most. As we identify the needs of these areas, more grants will go out to the volunteers and non-profits aiding their communities.
We will continue to provide updates as funds are being used. Thank you to everyone who has donated to support our local communities when they need it most!