WILLOWS, Calif. - One business in Willows is doing all it can to provide people with some kind of normalcy during these tough times.
“We have put out to anyone who was evacuated that they are more than welcome to come and we will give you a free coffee with all the fixings and free wifi," said owners of Carte Blanche Kristine Coffman and Hilgard Muller. "We just really want to make a welcoming space for anyone that’s evacuated and needs a place to go.”
Carte Blanche in Willows is allowing people to come inside and get out of the smoke while still following COVID social distancing guidelines.
Coffman and Muller are not going to let the Coronavirus or the fires keep them from helping others.
“It’s just every day it seems like there is a new obstacle, so we just want to be able to do whatever we can to just going back to creating normalcy whatever that is and it feels good to have this business to offer that,” said Muller.
The American Red Cross in Willows is also providing a safe and comforting place for people to stay.
“It’s really important to have an ear to listen to," said Red Cross volunteer, Amy Prather. "So when they come in, sometimes it’s like I said they just need to be able to get in contact with family members, they just need to be able to say how afraid they are, what's happening with their property, they don’t know, and a lot of times just listening to them.”
Prather said the center is making sure to follow COVID-19 guidelines by checking temperatures, having people fill out symptoms forms, and wearing a mask at all times.
She said it has been challenging to be sensitive to people's needs while following these guidelines.
“The challenges because of COVID, we aren’t doing a traditional shelter where we have cots and a big gym or a big room and we’ve set everybody up so now we’re doing individual family groups," said Prather.
The American Red Cross plans to continue to provide services until people can safely return to their homes.
The temporary evacuation center hosted by the American Red Cross is also providing hotel rooms for those who need somewhere to stay for the night
The temporary evacuation center is located at the City Hall in Willows. CLICK HERE for the latest updates on the August Complex.