Donate a meal, shelter an animal, offer up lodgings….and many more ways to pitch in.

The La Honda Fire Station, home to a volunteer fire brigade, is situated near the northern part of the CZU August Lightning Complex. (Photo by Kate Bradshaw)

Fire season has returned and with a vengeance, as an assortment of different wildfires continue to burn around the state. Here in the 6–5–0 area code, the south coast area has been greatly affected in recent days, with large swaths of the region impacted and many residents forced to evacuate.

As these wildfire emergencies continue, we have compiled this list of local resources for both staying informed and helping.

Take a look and please contribute where you can….

(If you’re aware of any others, please email [email protected] or leave the relevant information in a comment at the bottom of the story.)

An emergency vehicle passes through the smoke behind the road closure lines in San Mateo County on Sunday, Aug. 23. (Photo by Kate Bradshaw)

Stay informed

The fires burning along the coast near the borders of San Mateo and Santa Cruz counties are being specifically referred to as the CZU August Lightning Complex. You can get updated information and monitor the current status of these areas via Cal Fire’s incidents page (or follow on Twitter here).

To check on the local situation as well as other fires around the state, you can reference this wildfire map from the Los Angeles Times (which, unlike those from many other outlets, appears free of a paywall).

Locally, it is important to be aware of the current status regarding roads and other developments related to the fires.(Despite calls from fire officials for beachgoers to stay off coastal highways this past weekend, many visitors still turned out.) Check for information and updates from the County of San Mateothe Half Moon Bay Review (for recent updates on the coast) and Midpeninsula Open Space. Also, you can register for updates with the San Mateo County Alert System.

Our sister publication The Palo Alto Weekly has released an expanded list of updates and resources.

And monitor the latest air quality here via PurpleAir.

The Red Barn, a landmark in the La Honda Creek Open Space Preserve, is barely visible through the smoke on Sunday, Aug. 23. (Photo by Kate Bradshaw)

Where to donate/Ways to help

Puente De La Costa Sur, the hyper-local community advocacy group and resource center, is already actively involved in coordinating to help Coastside families who have been displaced by the fires. Puente is staffing an evacuation center at Half Moon Bay High School (now as well as providing at maximum capacity) and providing hotel vouchers for local families. You can donate to Puente’s Emergency Fire Relief Fund here.

The regional page of the Red Cross (Northern California Coastal Region) offers a variety of resources (shelter info, wildfire preparedness, etc.) as well as opportunities to donate directly to those affected.

Other organizations working locally to coordinate donations and assistance include:

San Mateo & Santa Clara County Fire Relief Fund

Coastside Hope

Second Harvest Food Bank of Silicon Valley

Also, Airbnb is offering available homes to families displaced by the fires. If you have lodgings to offer and would like to participate, register here.

The Cow Palace is operating as an evacuation center for livestock. Click here for more info. Meanwhile, the Peninsula Humane Society is accepting donations of pet food, cat litter and newspapers at its Coyote Point Shelter location (12 Airport Blvd., San Mateo) as well as financial donations online. Also, San Mateo County Large Animal Evacuation Group is accepting donations and looking for volunteers. You can also donate feed and supplies directly to HMB Feed & Fuel (331 Main St., Half Moon Bay, CA ; 650–726–4814).

A fundraiser page has been established for the rehabilitation of Big Basin Redwoods State Park.

Volunteer firefighters from the La Honda Fire Brigade have been busy battling fires that have struck very close to home. (Photo by Kate Bradshaw)

Meals for fire victims and first responders

Numerous local restaurants have jumped in to provide food for first responders and those displaced by the fires. Help them in their efforts by donating or purchasing meals to be delivered.

Alice’s Restaurant in Woodside has already raised over $25,000 to support the local emergency crews. Donate via Venmo (@Alices-Restaurant) or check Facebook for the latest updates.

The Post in Los Altos has teamed up with Namesake Cheesecake in Menlo Park to provide meals to and gather essential supplies for first responders and evacuated residents. Get full details for donations via this GoFundMe page. Also, check here for more on dropping off supplies (Tuesday–Friday, 12–4 p.m.)

Flea St. Cafe in Menlo Park is continuing its COVID-era Meals of Gratitude program, which delivers meals to front-line workers, to support people fighting the fires or impacted by them.

On the Coastside, numerous restaurants have been providing free meals this past weekend for evacuees, including The BarnBreakwater BBQ and Cameron’s Pub (check their social media accounts first to confirm). Sacrilege Brewing has been delivering meals to firefighters via their Coastmates Delivery service. Click here to find out more, or donate through Venmo @CoastmatesDelivery.

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Charles Russo

Award-winning writer and photographer with extensive experience across mediums, including videography, investigative reporting, editing, advanced research, and a wide range of photography.

Author of Striking Distance: Bruce Lee and the Dawn of Martial Arts in America; represented by Levine Greenberg Rostan Agency.

Freelance clients include Google, VICE and Stanford University.

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