In discussion with local Santa Cruz County officials, it was determined that laundry services were needed for first responders and evacuees housed at the county fairgrounds where there is now a tent city of hundreds and hundreds of tents and trailers. Note: over 77,000 residents have been evacuated from their homes in the Monterey and Santa Cruz counties.
The fairgrounds are a major designated temporary housing site for fire fighters, evacuees, and those needing medical attention, including evacuees from full care elderly facilities. Firefighters returning from their shifts are covered in oily poison oak residue. Covid19 has made portable washing at the fairgrounds a dangerous code violation.
The #CaliforniaLions were assigned by the county the responsibility to solve the laundry challenge. We worked with local laundromats as is shown in the email below and monies spent were forwarded by the California Lions Foundation to our district and local Lions Club to cover our club’s upfront expense:
“Dai, Thank you again! This is to let you know that a check for $2000 addressed to Laundry Day Watsonville is being delivered to the laundromat this morning. The checking account is with the local Freedom Lions Club. These monies are for your use as an upfront tab to be drawn from as first responders and evacuees housed at the Santa Cruz County fairgrounds are directed to your nearby laundry facility. We expect that evacuees will begin daily use of your Laundromat today. Each authorized user will have been given a Lions Clubs International business card from County of Santa Cruz exec, Christian Quaglia (cc’d), where the backside of the card in blue background says “Where There’s a Need There’s a Lion.” Please have your managers take the card from the user and save the cards for later recycling to Christian Quaglia of this authorized user process. The Lions will be checking in daily to verify that this process is working well. We’re not sure how many users there will be. However, as the $2000 prepayment gets drawn down, please expect that the Lions will replenish as appropriate.