POCATELLO, Idaho - There are many ways to help victims of the Charlotte fire, and the list is growing. The following information will updated as warranted.
The American Red Cross has been active in helping victims of the fire.
It is accepting monetary donations to do things from providing clothes to replacing eyeglasses, even providing rent for someone who needs it. It has also brought in medical and mental health professionals to help. The Red Cross has said it will keep all donation local as long as a restrictive note is made on the check.
You can get funds to the Red Cross in one of the following ways:
- Send a check to the Boise office (146 South Cole, 83709).
- Give a check to Liz Jordan at the Red Cross Blood office in the Pine Ridge Mall, which she will forward to Boise.
- Donate online at redcrossidaho.org. There is nowhere online to specify that the gift be used locally, but you can direct it to the Idaho Chapter or to Disaster Relief.
- Give online through the United Way of Southeastern Idaho (unitedwaysei.org)—we'll ensure that 100 percent of the funds go directly to the Red Cross for local victims' relief. Select the option to "add special instructions to the seller" and tell us the funds are for Red Cross's local fire relief efforts.
- Send a check to United Way (PO Box 911, Pocatello 83204) and tell it to send the funds to Red Cross for Pocatello fire relief.
In addition to money, the Red Cross is also accepting commercially prepared food. The organization is accepting clothing through Deseret Industries in Pocatello at 580 Roosevelt Ave.
The Red Cross does not need any more volunteers at the moment, but that could change.
The organization is helping provide a help line for victims at (208) 234-6201.
Businesses can help the Red Cross through the Pocatello Businesses Care! organization. A Facebook page is set up for that purpose at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Pocatello-Businesses-Care/169957419803904.
You can also donate to the Red Cross at Lowe's in Pocatello. You can choose to donate there, regardless of if you buy anything.
St. Vincent De Paul Society
The St. Vincent De Paul Society said it is accepting donations of any kind, including food, clothing and furniture. The thrift store said all donations will be directed only to fire victims. It is also welcoming anyone interested in volunteering. For more information, call (208) 478-2062. The store is at 855 S. Second Ave. in Pocatello.
Law enforcement and fire officials expressed gratitude for the donations they received during the Pocatello Independence Day parade at nearly $9,000. You can still donate at Idaho Central Credit Union.
The Bannock Humane Society and Pocatello Animal Shelter are active in helping fire victims as well. They are providing a place to stay and care for dogs. The shelter is setting up vets to help with both large and small animals. Horses and livestock can go to Bannock County Fairgrounds. The humane society plans to put together "posses" to help look for lost animals once area opens. Call (208) 232-0371 for details, or go to http://communityanimalhospital.aahavet.org/web2/index.aspx or http://www.bannockhumanesociety.org/
Community Animal Hospital in Pocatello is accepting donations for pets and people who lost their homes in the Charlotte Fire. Suggested donations include dog food, cat food, dog and cat beds, food and water bowls, leashes, and collars; for people, clothing, toiletries or nonperishable food. Donated items will be distributed directly to fire victims or to the Red Cross shelter at Holt Arena.
Two next-door-neighbors in the area scorched by the Charlotte Fire have begun a project to help make the Charlotte Drive, Caribou, Cinnamon Ridge, Autumn Lane, and Gibson Jack areas bloom again. The Charlotte's Garden Project asks gardening neighbors across Southeast Idaho to save seeds from their plantings through the summer and fall and pass them on to those affected by the fire. The organizers are hoping to receive perennial, biennial, wildflower, and annual (especially self-sowing annual) flower seeds, along with vegetable seeds. Donation of iris and day lily divisions, along with other plant material, is also possible by special arrangement. For more information, see www.pocatello.us/se/charlottesgarden.htm or contact Susan Swetnam at firstname.lastname@example.org or Hannah Sanger at email@example.com. No money accepted.
Bannock County Sheriff Lorin Nielsen has urged those who wanted to help to also check in with churches in the area.
More places to donate
The following agencies are receiving donated items and will distribute them to victims, according to the United Way of Southeastern Idaho:
SEICAA - (208) 232-1114 ext. 100, Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., 641 N. Eighth Ave., Pocatello.
Salvation Army - (208) 232-5318, Monday through Friday, 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 4 p.m., 400 N. Fourth Ave., Pocatello.
Aid for Friends - (208) 232-0178, 232-5669, 9 to 5 a.m. at the administrative office, 555 S. First Ave., Pocatello.; emergency shelter at 232-5669, open to accept donations over weekend from 9 a.m. to dusk. Limited space - mainly clothing, bedding, towels and hygiene kits.
Deseret Industries - (208) 232-5174, Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday to Friday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., 580 Roosevelt Ave., Pocatello. Donations can be marked for fire relief. DI is a partner with Pocatello.
Red Lion - (208) 233-2200, open all weekend. Donation Central is set up in the Teton Room. Ask at the front desk if you need help finding it. All donated items will be delivered to one or more of the agencies listed above.