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Oakland's Fire: How to Help

Monday, December 5, 2016

UPDATE: Wednesday, December 7, 2016

As an update to our December 5 post on the tragic fire at the Ghost Ship, an artist live-work space in Oakland’s Fruitvale district, please find below opportunities to support both immediate and longer term needs:

To support immediate needs:  In cooperation with the City of Oakland, the East Bay Community Foundation is helping to channel funds to address short-term needs of victims and their families, including for temporary housing and funeral expenses. Individuals wishing to support these efforts to provide immediate assistance may do so through one of two YouCaring sites, which are raising funds in coordination with the Oakland Mayor’s office:

  • The Oakland A’s, Oakland Raiders, and Golden State Warriors are working together to raise money that will be managed and dispersed by the Red Cross. The sports teams are providing a total of $150,000 in matching funds to donations made through this fundraising page.
  • Gray Area Foundation for the Arts is raising money through this fundraising page that will be dispersed directly to victims and their families, and via the Red Cross.

To support longer-term needs: EBCF also maintains a Community Resilience Fund to provide support in times of tragedy and loss. In response to the fire, this fund will provide grants to community-based organizations working to mitigate the medium and long-term impacts from this tragedy, including addressing the underlying issues of safety and affordability of spaces for the artist community in Oakland. EBCF is committed to ensuring that funds are available for long-term recovery after the initial crisis has passed.

Coincidentally, the Center for Disaster Philanthropy released a new section of its Disaster Playbook on Communities in Crisis yesterday.  This timely section includes recommended strategies for foundations responding to crises in their communities, innovative practices, and activities undertaken in response to past events and lessons learned. 


Monday, December 5, 2016

Last Friday evening, a deadly fire brought tragedy to Oakland. Officials have confirmed that at least 36 people, many of them young adults, perished in the blaze at the Ghost Ship, an artist live-work space in the Fruitvale district. The final death toll is expected to rise. We are grieving and mourn this terrible loss together with our community.

The East Bay Community Foundation and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf recommend donations be made to YouCaring. Donations will be managed by the American Red Cross.

We will publicize additional opportunities to support intermediate and long-term assistance as we become aware of them.

(Photo: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)