Even as search and rescue efforts continue in the wake of the mudslide in Washington state, the communities affected by the slide are beginning to focus on the long recovery ahead.
Snohomish County stressed that Darrington, one of the towns affected, is not seeking volunteers to help with the search. Yesterday, the Snohomish County Red Cross asked that those wanting to help stay away from the scene, warning that the area remains dangerous even for trained crew. According to NBC, some rescuers on Saturday “got dragged in up to their armpits and had to be dragged out by ropes themselves,” Gov. Jay Inslee said in a Sunday press briefing.
Friends and families of those missing have begun to set up relief funds to help families rebuild. A fund has been started for the Kuntz family, who lost their home and some relatives; for Kris and John Regelbrugge, who lost their home and are among the missing; and for Ron and Gail Thompson, who, along with their elderly mother, lost their home.
The operator of a Facebook page called “Mudslide Info and Relief effort” is seeking donations and volunteers for a fundraising auction. Members of the community have offered up prizes and services, including cookies, storage containers and tutoring. Mental health providers in the area are also offering their services.
A group of volunteers formed to relocate livestock and pets, and the Everett Animal Shelter is helping those with pets affected by the slide, as well as collecting donations of food and supplies for smaller animals.
The Cascade Valley Hospital Foundation has set up a fund to help victims of the slide. The Snohomish County Red Cross is accepting monetary donations but does not need supplies or volunteers at this time.
Other groups accepting donations include:
Gas Card Donations Darrington Mudslide Fund
PO Box 90 Darrington, WA 98241
Checks only, please write "Gas" in memo line.
All other donations will go to general fund.
Snohomish Boys & Girls Club
Gift Cards of all types or money to purchase cards
402 2nd St. Snohomish, WA 98290
Food Donations Arlington Community Food Bank
19118 63rd Ave NE Arlington
For those in the area, donations can be dropped in the 12th man container, seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Helping Hands Thrift Store
18722 59th Ave NE Arlington
Food, Clothing, toiletries, appliances, house wares, furniture, and more
135 S. French Arlington, WA 98223
Clothes and toiletries for young children through teens only please.
Four search and rescue workers wade through water covering Washington Highway 530, March 27, 2014, on the eastern edge of the massive mudslide that struck Saturday near Darrington, Wash. as heavy equipment moves trees and other debris in the background. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, Pool)