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AARP donates $10K to help Idaho fire victims

Posted at 4:31 PM, Feb 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-15 19:12:28-05

AARP Idaho and the AARP Foundation have donated $10,000 to help rebuild homes destroyed by north Idaho wildfires in last summer.

The Clearwater Complex, composed of five separate fires, burned more than 68,000 acres and damaged or destroyed more than 60 homes in Clearwater, Lewis, Idaho and Nez Perce Counties.

“Idaho Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (also known as the Idaho VOAD) will use the funds to help with the long-term recovery efforts currently underway. This includes residential repair, residential construction, occupational support and providing the basic resources needed for people to return to their homes,” said AARP spokesman Randy Simon.

“One of our goals is to help Idahoans age with dignity and respect. That starts with providing adequate housing and getting families back in their homes,” said AARP State Director Lupe Wissel. “This community based approach will ensure families have the stability they need to properly recover from last year’s damaging wildfire season.”

To date, Idaho VOAD has helped more than 75 Idahoans recover from wildfire damage. Much of the work includes rebuilding pump houses for adequate water supplies.

“Idahoans are immensely proud of their state and take care of one another during times of need,” said AARP Idaho State President Tom Trail. “This is a great example of that approach and as an association we are privileged to work with other organizations and citizens who are helping those who lost their homes to prepare for a better future.”

“A contribution like this serves as a fitting tribute to our founder and the legacy of Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus’ motto, ‘to serve and not to be served’,” Wissel added.

But donations are still needed. If you’d like to help out, you can contact Idaho VOAD President Dave Tish at 208-869-5924 or email dave.tish@redcross.org.