This month, we are highlighting the frontline work of Puente de la Costa Sur, an organization serving coastal communities affected by the wildfires. From now until September 30, all donations to Fossil Free CA will be shared 50/50 with Puente.
Puente de la Costa Sur (Puente) is an integral and active member of the rural San Mateo County South Coast community. As the region’s only community resource center, Puente serves the South Coast of San Mateo County; Pescadero, La Honda, Loma Mar, and San Gregorio. Puente both advocates for our communities and leverages resources that foster economic prosperity and security, and that promote individual and community health and wellness. We support local leaders and work together with our neighbors creating solutions for our diverse communities. Each year Puente provides services and support to 1,500 individuals – nearly 1/3 of the residents of the region.
Puente’s Emergency Fire Relief Fund
Puente has created an Emergency Fire Relief Fund to assist families and individuals who have been impacted by the CZU Fire. These funds will provide financial assistance for individuals who need to find a new rental home, rental assistance, to purchase gift cards for food and clothing, and to provide direct financial assistance for individuals who experienced a financial loss because of the fire.
The CZU August Lightning Complex Fire started on August 16, 2020 and has burned 86,509 acres and destroyed almost 1,000 residences in the counties of San Mateo and Santa Cruz.
On Tuesday August 18, Puente staff joined efforts with the Red Cross and San Mateo County Human Services Agency to set up an evacuation center at Pescadero High School. Due to the growth of the fire, the Evacuation Center was moved to the Half Moon Bay High School on August 19th. For ten days, the Puente team supported the evacuation center 24 hours a day providing information and working with partner agencies and volunteers to assist in registering families and individuals for hotel vouchers.
Because of COVID-19 safety concerns, evacuees were provided hotel rooms. Some households provided their own accommodations by staying with relatives, friends, or making their own hotel arrangements or parking their RV’s at no-cost sites. Puente and partner organizations have been distributing gift cards for grocery and clothing stores and coordinating with other partners to provide meals and essential items such as water, snacks, diapers, baby wipes, toiletries, socks, school supplies, and more.
If you have been impacted by the fire, please call 650-879-1691 to make an appointment with Puente staff.