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Resource Center To Help Kincade Fire Victims Opens In Healdsburg

HEALDSBURG (KPIX 5) -- While the Kincade Fire is mostly contained, its victims are still trying to get their lives back in order on Monday, with many seeking assistance at the Kincade Fire recovery center that opened in Healdsburg.

Containment numbers edged up to 80 percent for the Kincade Fire burning in Sonoma County as of Monday morning, according to Cal Fire.

The fire agency released its latest update as of 7 a.m. Monday on the fire, which started near Geyserville on Oct. 23 and has burned 77,758 acres. It was estimated at 78 percent contained as of the previous update on Sunday evening.

Fire officials estimate that 374 structures have been destroyed and 60 others have been damaged in the blaze, which prompted widespread evacuations in the days after it started. However, as of Sunday, all evacuation orders related to the fire have been lifted.

The local assistance center opened at the Healdsburg Community Center at 1557 Healdsburg Avenue Monday morning. It will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Wednesday, with the possibility of hours being extended beyond Wednesday if necessary.

24 different organizations were on hand to offer help, guidance and information to fire victims.

Groups at local assistance center the will be offering donated food and clothing for those who lost their homes and possessions, financial assistance, document replacement, housing counseling and Rental Assistance in addition to general counseling.

Martha Solorio -- a mother of three whose family was evacuated from the Larkfield area -- was among those waiting to get help. Her husband is an undocumented farm worker who has been out of work until today, because of the fire.

"We just want to get everything settled and get the help that we can get," said Solorio. "He's undocumented and it's hard. It's really hard."

The center is providing resources from the county, state and local non-profits.

Chair of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors David Rabbitt said Sonoma has been here before.

"The local assistance center has really become the first step towards normalcy," explained Rabbitt. "This was something we were able to get up relatively quickly. All of our employees have experience from the last '17 disaster, so we were able to seamlessly flow right into this. It's unfortunate and fortunate both at the same time."

The center is helping families like Solorio's feel like they're making some progress in the wake of the fire, doing whatever it takes to get their kids' life back in order.

"They're my motivation and I will do anything to keep them safe, said Solorio. They're my motivation. that's what keeps me running and going."

Officials want to make clear that all Sonoma County residents can access services regardless of immigration status. No documentation is required to receive help from the agencies offering assistance.

More information is available at the website.



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