As catastrophic wildfires continue to burn throughout California, insurance professionals are stepping in to lend a hand.
Friday, the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) — a nonprofit organization supported by industry associates across the United States and United Kingdom — presented a $20,000 check to the Shasta Regional Community Foundation to aid in relief efforts for those impacted by Northern California’s record-breaking Carr Fire.
Over the past week, the foundation raised more than $30,000 to help tens of thousands of residents who have been displaced by the statewide infernos. They accept donations on an ongoing basis, and 100% of the proceeds directly benefit local relief efforts.
The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) helps communities and enriches lives by combining the collective strengths of the industry to provide grants, volunteer service, and leadership.
In fulfillment of their mission to help communities and enrich lives, IICF provides a central hub for insurance professionals — from independent agents to corporate executives to industry partners — with a unified goal of giving back to the communities they serve.
Since its 1994 inception, IICF has coordinated more than 100,000 volunteers and granted over $31 million to communities in need. Last year alone, they raised $650,000 in disaster relief funds for hurricane and wildfire victims on both sides of the U.S.
Melissa-Ann Duncan, executive director of the IICF Western Division, is spearheading the California wildfire relief fundraising efforts. While she’s passionate about mobilizing aid wherever disaster strikes, the thick, smoke-laden air looming outside her Southern California office window is a constant reminder that this particular emergency is, in the most literal sense, especially close to home.
How You Can Help
- Individual and Company Donations
You can learn more about the organization and how to contribute through the IICF website, or go directly to their donations page. To arrange corporate contributions, employee matching programs, or to discuss other opportunities to help communities impacted by the wildfires, contact Melissa-Ann Duncan at email@example.com or (714) 870-1084.
- Wildfire Education
Since, year after year, the wildfire threat continues to grow, you might also want to offer information, prevention, and safety tips to your own policyholders - even if they live in currently unaffected regions of California or another state altogether. A few helpful resources include:
Cal Fire on CA.gov
Learn the current location, size, evacuation radius, and status of each major fire in the state of California.
"Prepare for Wildfire" by Cal Fire
This comprehensive wildfire-preparedness website contains a variety of safety guides and other related educational materials.
This app allows you to receive real-time alerts on wildfires in your area, as well as preparation checklists, fire maps, and other helpful features.
Statewide Wildfire Recovery Resources
The California Office of Emergency Services provides the locations and contact information for local assistance and disaster recovery services.
- Spread the Word
Let your colleagues know about this opportunity to lend support. When you share on social media, don't forget to add the hashtag:
Beyond Premiums and Claims
Most insurance professionals choose this line of work because they understand the devastating potential of unexpected events, whether it's a relatively small-scale loss, or a state-wide crisis, as California residents are facing right now. Risk is everywhere, and when things go wrong, we want to help.
IICF continues to demonstrate that, beyond their role in financial planning, the insurance industry is made up of people who truly care about the well-being of the individuals, families, and communities they serve.