The tragic mudslide in La Conchita on Monday, January 10, has claimed 10 lives. Direct Relief immediately contacted the Santa Barbara Chapter of the American Red Cross and the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Services and offered emergency assistance from its current inventory of emergency medical supplies and personal care items. Direct Relief has a standing agreement with the Office of Emergency Services to access Direct Relief inventories in emergencies.
While the immediate medical needs of the victims appear to have been met, the survivors in this small community have experienced tremendous personal loss of family and friends, and many have suffered severe economic loss as well.
The local branches of Santa Barbara Bank and Trust have established memorial bank accounts for La Conchita families and residents. Deposits into these accounts – which are in the names of individual families or persons – can be made at any branch of Santa Barbara Bank and Trust.
A local Santa Barbara resident had previously arranged a fundraising event this Sunday for victims of the tsunami in Asia. Direct Relief has asked that this event’s proceeds instead, however, be directed to assist families in La Conchita directly.
Because Santa Barbara Bank and Trust has created this mechanism to provide cash directly to families, Direct Relief has not created its own designated fund for La Conchita victims.
Our hearts go out to our neighbors in La Conchita who have suffered such a tragic loss. Direct Relief will do whatever we can to assist them in this difficult period.