Le Lézard
Classified in: Environment, Health, Covid-19 virus
Subjects: NPT, VET, NAT

American Red Cross and Team Rubicon Join Forces to Lessen Community Impacts of Colorado Wildfires

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Red Cross today announced a $200,000 grant provided to veteran-led disaster relief organization Team Rubicon to execute wildfire mitigation services in Grand County, Colorado. With this commitment, Team Rubicon will have the resources required to collaborate with community members, municipal leaders, and fire authorities to provide education, fuel reduction, and fire mitigation services. This effort will aim to ultimately reduce the devastation and destruction experienced due to wildfires while simultaneously building community resilience to future fire risks.

"The American Red Cross is proud to partner with Team Rubicon to mitigate wildfire risk in Colorado," said Amanda Ree, Executive Director of the Wildfire Recovery Programs for the American Red Cross. "Partnerships such as these are a vital component to community preparedness and environmental protection as we navigate wildfire risk."

"We are extremely grateful to The American Red Cross for their support in enabling us to conduct this important work in Grand County, Colorado," stated Art delaCruz, CEO of Team Rubicon. "Team Rubicon has continued to make investments in and innovate on its approach to mitigation. The goal of these efforts is not only to get people back into their homes more quickly following the fire, but also to aid their communities on how to be prepared for the next fire."

To achieve this change in the community, Team Rubicon is working at the direction of Grand County Emergency Management and Grand County Wildfire Council. In 2022, Team Rubicon will launch large-scale mitigation operations for several Grand County communities, including Winter Park Highlands and Alpine Park, both designated Very High Hazard areas for wildfires. Team Rubicon will also support Grand County, CO fire recovery efforts based on the Emergency Watershed Protection program to establish safer egress during evacuations. Services will include: building defensible space around homes; creating fuelbreaks designed to isolate, stop or reduce the spread of fire along evacuation routes and roadways; and erosion control through seeding, mulching, and sediment/debris management to prevent future destruction caused by post-fire flooding, sediment, or debris.

By engaging local volunteers and partnering with county emergency managers and wildfire councils, the organization can help execute Community Wildfire Protection Plans to build community resilience for future wildfires. As with Grand County, CO, many communities are considered high hazard because of challenges in resource accessibility, excess fuel loads, burn areas from previous fires, and limited personnel to conduct mitigation work. Team Rubicon's services not only include fire mitigation to reduce fuels and create buffers between property and the fire, but also includes flood mitigation to prevent flooding and sediment loading as debris moves downstream and into water sources. In 2021 alone, Team Rubicon completed 35 wildfire operations and more than 25+ mitigation operations throughout the United States.

To ensure TR services are accessible to people who need them the most, Team Rubicon prioritizes delivering equitable and quality services to communities living in at-risk and high-hazard conditions. With the extra resources provided by the American Red Cross, Team Rubicon will be able to better embed within these vulnerable communities in 2022.

About Team Rubicon
Team Rubicon serves communities by mobilizing veterans to continue their service by leveraging their skills and experience to help people prepare, respond, and recover from disasters and humanitarian crises. Founded following the Haiti earthquake in 2010, the organization has grown to almost 150,000 volunteers across the United States and has launched nearly 1,000 operations both domestically and internationally. Amidst the COVID-19 outbreak, Team Rubicon has not only pivoted to be able to continue to deliver disaster response and rebuild services in core mission areas but has also expanded their scope of missions to meet community needs brought about by COVID. Visit www.teamrubiconusa.org for more information. Visit www.teamrubiconusa.org for more information.

About The American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

Joy Moh
Head of Communications
[email protected]

SOURCE Team Rubicon

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