Faith and Community Leaders Distribute $50,000 to West Oakland Fire Survivors


Caption: West Oakland fire survivor sign up at Greater St. Paul Missionary Baptist  to receive donation from the community raised by the Oakland San Pablo Fire Relief Advocacy Committee. Those serving the suriviors on Monday incuded (L to R): Rosalind Miller, Red Cross; Tresa Wickliffe ;and Pastor Debra Avery, First Presbyterian Church.  Photo by Ken Epstein. 

The distribution of $50,000 to fire survivors began Monday afternoon, May 15 at Greater St Paul Church at 1827 Martin Luther King Way in Oakland, organized by the West Oakland San Pablo Fire Relief Advocacy Committee.

The relief committee was established to support the unmet of those families impacted by the March 27 fire at 2551 San Pablo Avenue.  Unmet needs were defined as those needs not met by the City of Oakland and County of Alameda allocated services and funds.

The funds were distributed equitably via gift cards to each individual – including children – based on the verified list issued by the Red Cross.

In collaboration with the Oakland Native Give Back Fund, individuals received school supplies and tennis shoes for pre-registered school-age children, along with new clothing contributed by community members.

While the committee is working to raise $100,000 for the families, so far the fund has collected nearly $50,000.

As additional funds are received after May 15, a second date will be set.  At this time, the committee does not plan to provide reimbursement or support for individuals or groups beyond the verified list.

Those who have helped on the relief committee include co-chairs Bishop Joseph Simmons, Greater St. Paul Church; and Pastor Debra Avery, First Presbyterian Church; as well as Pastor Kevin Barnes, Abyssinian Baptist Church; Pastor Lawrence Van Hook, Christian Community Church; Raymond Lankford, Healthy Communities; Gay Plair Cobb, Oakland Private Industry Council; LaNiece Jones, Black Women Organized for Political Action; representatives from the Mayor’s office, City Councilmember At-Large Rebecca Kaplan, Oakland Fire Department, Red Cross and Showing Up For Racial Justice.

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