OROVILLE, Calif. - It’s been almost a year since the Bear Fire tore through Berry Creek, and on Saturday, about 150 survivors got some much-needed resources to help get back on their feet.
Jami Gillis, born and raised in Berry Creek, was one of those survivors.
“I miss it,” Gillis said. “I really miss home.”
Gillis’ father moved to Berry Creek nearly 50 years ago and built every structure on their family property.
But when the Bear Fire wreaked havoc on the community, Gillis lost everything.
“It doesn’t seem like it’s been a year,” she continued. “It still feels like yesterday. But I’m going to get there. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. I know there is.”
So, when groups and organizers like Josh Jamison come together to help people like Gillis, it can be life-changing.
Jamison, chairman of the group, explained, “It’s basically different, interested organizations who’ve gotten together to bring resources to Bear Fire survivors. We’re also gathering information and connecting the dots for people to be able to connect with disaster case managers. That’s a key and vital role.”
They provided everything from batteries, toys, and bedding to information on how to prepare for and what to do after disasters.
They even gave away items as simple as bread and for some, something like that can go a long way.
“Everybody is working together,” Jamison said. “We are one big family and really have the interest of survivors at heart.”
“It’s really helpful to have supportive people around to point you in the right direction and be a support,” Gillis continued. “I know a lot of people want to go back. I hope it brings our community closer.”
The Bear Fire Long-Term Recovery Group hopes to put on more events like this in the future.
If you missed today’s event, some resources are attached below: