Fire relief efforts available for Greater Winters area residents

Mayor Wade Cowan and his wife Kathy drove to Fremont on Wednesday, Aug. 27 to pick up 100 portable power units and 50 solar panels from Jackery, Inc. Photo by Crystal Apilado/Winters Express

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Residents living in the greater Winters area who were impacted by the LNU Lightening Complex fire can now request funding assistance and pick up essential and non-essential items at no cost.

The Greater Winters Fire Relief Fund is a local collaborative effort created to raise and distribute monetary donations and basic necessities (clothing, toiletries, and more) for community members who lost their homes or who were displaced by the fire last month due to evacuations of their areas.

The Rotary Club of Winters led the financial side of the local efforts. They teamed up with the City of Winters and the Winters Chamber of Commerce to collect cash, checks and gift card donations at First Northern Bank and at a variety of local businesses.

Tamsen Schultz, the Winters Rotary President, said as of Tuesday morning they had collected about $61K. She said they still had to collect donation amounts from the local businesses and their P.O. Box.

Request Financial Support
Residents who seek to request financial help to cover their immediate needs should send the request in an email to WintersRotary@gmail.com.

They will need to include the following information:

  • First and Last Name
  • Address in greater Winters (in the 95694 zip code) impacted by the fire
  • Do you have insurance that covers your losses?
  • Number of members in the family living at that address. (Note how many adults and minors and, include information about any medical needs or disabilities.)
  • List of items needed (Rotary will be providing cash or cards, but they need an idea of what each family/person needs)
  • Do you have any workers on your property that may be needing assistance? If so, please provide names and ask them to contact Rotary and/or complete this information and send to Rotary
  • List any assistance you are receiving from other organizations.
  • Best way to contact you.
  • Whether you can pick up the assistance in person or will need it delivered.

Shultz told the Express that in order for Rotary to stay compliant with laws governing non-profits, recipients will be asked to sign a form acknowledging the assistance received when it is delivered to them. 

She asks requestees to be aware that given the number of people impacted and the variety of needs that have arisen, they will do their best to meet immediate needs, which will be based on the amount of funding available.

Power Pack Units Available

Jackery, Inc. provided 100 power supply packs and 50 solar power units for residents in the Greater Winters Area who lost their homes.
Photo by Crystal Apilado/Winters Express

On Wednesday, Aug. 26 Mayor Wade Cowan and his wife Kathy made a trip down to Fremont. Cowan had received word from Jackery, Inc. that they would be making a donation of Portable Power Stations and mobile solar panel units for residents of the greater Winters area.

Julie Wang, manager at Jackery, Inc., donated 100 Portable Power Stations (50 of their Explorer 160, and 50 of their Explorer 240 models) and 50 solar power units.

Cowan said she offered to donate more if the demand was more than what they had brought home that day.

Depending on the amount of watt hours provided by the unit, the Portable Power Stations can help to power a cpap machine, refrigerator, LED lighting, computer or charge a cell phone. Cowan said the power stations are made with rechargeable Lithium-ion batteries, and each had an integrated AC and multiple USB ports.

“You won’t have to run your generator so much,” Cowan said. “Generators have to draw a certain amount of amperage. It won’t power a computer. That’s where these things can be very handy.”

While they are usually used for outdoor camping, they could help to support anyone who was without power for the time being as AT&T works to restore power to the different areas. They can be recharged using an outlet, a car charger or solar panels.

Requestees will need to note which type of unit they would like. The 160-watt unit will power a computer, phone and other smaller devices. The 240-watt unit is larger and can power items like the cpap machine and refrigerator. They should also note if they are in need of the solar panel units to help charge the power station.

To request a Jackery Power Station, contact one of the following coordinators. They will coordinate with Winters Rotary to ensure the device is received: 

  • Solano County Supervisor John Vasquez: 707-784-6129 or jmvasquez@solanocounty.com.
  • Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor: 530-757-5557 or Don.Saylor@yolocounty.org.
  • Winters City Councilmember Jesse Loren: 530-554-8087 or Jesse.Loren@cityofwinters.org.
  • Mayor Wade Cowan: Wade.Cowan@cityofwinters.org.

Pick up Essential Items

Winters Parent Nursery School has a store set up for fire victims to come “shop” at no cost. Clothes are available for women, men, youth and babies.
Photo by Crystal Apilado/Winters Express

Greater Winters area residents can make an appointment with the Winters Parent Nursery School staff so they can shop (for free) for clothing, bedding, toiletries, toothbrushes and paste, and other items.

The entire WPNS schoolhouse (208 Fourth St.) has been transformed into a makeshift donation closet.

Clothing for men, women, youth and babies is available in their backroom. Household items including toiletries, feminine supplies, diapers and wipes, toys, pillows, blankets, shoes and more are in the front half of the school.

The last  available open shopping date is on Friday, Sept. 4 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. To schedule an appointment send an email to wintersparentnurseryschool@gmail.com or send a message to them through their Facebook page at facebook.com/wintersparentnurseryschool.

Appointments must be made ahead of time to ensure proper social distancing is met, and to make sure one of the WPNS staff or board members is available to help provide assistance and access to the schoolhouse.

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