One-hundred percent of the $1.98 million received for Thomas Fire and debris flow relief was given away by United Way of Santa Barbara County as of last week. Groups offering food, clothing, counseling, cleanup help, and more received $711,000 from the local nonprofit, and another $335,000 from the Southern California Wildfire and Flood Fund. More than 1,200 individuals received a total of $812,659 for lost property and wages. Preparedness, recovery, and rebuilding efforts in Montecito were given $99,341.
Help was asked for and given more than 20,000 times in the six months since the disaster, United Way reported. Agencies like Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, and Unity Shoppe each received $100,000 as they fed, clothed, and helped survivors clean up their properties. Unity and the Family Service Agency, which received $56,000, worked to match people with the help available. Women’s Economic Ventures was given $75,000 and worked with 50 individuals to get their business back on their feet.
Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics gave away 4,000 masks to combat the heavy pall of smoke in town, and hundreds of students, parents, and others affected by the tragedies received counseling from CALM, Hospice, the Family Service Agency, and chaplains and bereavement counselors at the assistance centers.
Santa Barbara’s United Way absorbed all the costs of administering the funds received and allocations.