Photo via The Weather Channel, March 8, 2017
March 13, 2017
The Kansas Rural Center (KRC) urges you to consider helping our Kansas friends and neighbors whose homes, farms, ranches and pastures were devastated by wildfires last week, and below offer information on how to do so.
KRC board members Kurt and Andi Dale of Protection, Kansas, in Comanche County have put a personal face on this tragedy/crisis in south central Kansas for many of us at KRC. While they are safe and sound, and did not experience loss themselves, they report that the “devastation is unbelievable, and the need is great” for their friends and neighbors in south central Kansas.
Last week, record wildfires fueled by high winds burned well over 700,000 acres in multiple counties. Comanche and Clark were hard hit, with Clark County the hardest hit with estimates of 3000 to 9000 head of cattle lost, and over 85% of the land in the county burned. Last week, news outlets carried sad stories of ranchers putting hundreds of cattle, too hurt and damaged to recover, out of their misery, and stories too of the human lives lost in Texas and Kansas.
Andi writes ,”We are so very fortunate, but the devastation is incredible – the loss of grass and livestock would bring you to your knees.” Andi reminds us that the need will go on long after the headlines in the state and national news stop covering the fire and move onto the next crisis elsewhere. According to Andi, there are so many things that take time to recoup in terms of insurance or rebuilding, or assistance from government programs. The Dale’s lost their home to a fire a few years ago, so know how long it can take for the wheels of bureaucracy to turn, and to process the internal personal loss.
So KRC urges you to support those in need by going to any of the following :
Cash, donations of hay and fencing supplies, and volunteer hours are all part of the relief effort. Kanas Farm Bureau and the Kansas Livestock Association are cooperating to provide fire relief services.
Kansas Farm Bureau’s website – www.kfb.org/firerelief.
Kansas Livestock Association – 785-273-5115. Checks can be mailed to the Kansas Livestock Foundation at 6031 SW 37th Street, Topeka, Kansas, 66614. “Fire Relief Fund” should be written in the memo line.
Local entities –
Ashland Community Foundation – www.Ashlandcf.com. Send checks to – Ashland Community Foundation/Wildfire Relief Fund, P.O. Box 276, Ashland, Kansas 67832. Please note “Wildfire Relief Fund” in memo line.
To donate hay, call Ashland Feed & Seed 620-635-2856.
To send relief to specific individuals and families –
If you know a specific family or individual impacted, make checks payable directly to the individual or family and mail to:
Stockgrowers State Bank, Wildfire Relief, P.O. Box 458, Ashland, Kansas 67831.
Bank of Ashland, Wildfire Relief, PO Box 157, Ashland, Kansas 67831.
Thank you. As Kansans, we always rally to those in need. Thanks to the above organizations for their capacity to help us all do that.
Kansas Rural Center