Contra Costa College gym becomes Red Cross evacuation center


The Contra Costa College gymnasium became an American Red Cross Evacuation Center last night with up to 500 bed spaces for fire victims from Napa and Solano counties, according to San Pablo and CCC police.

Also last night, the Red Cross opened a shelter at the Cal Expo at 1600 Exposition Blvd. in Sacramento due to expanding evacuations caused by the devastating fires.

Shelter families will receive three meals per day, snacks, other essential items and access to mental health counseling and medical services from a staff of nurses, said Martha Fayeman, the shelter manager.

San Police police Chief Raman reports that patrol teams responded to the gymnasium at CCC, 2600 Mission Bell Drive, with a truckload of supplies donated by police personnel and community members. Supplies included well over 30 cases of water, juice, sports drinks, chips, cups of noodles, snacks, and hygiene products, police said.

“Everyone is welcome at Red Cross shelters,” according to the Red Cross. “People do not need to be American citizens to receive our assistance. Our volunteers will work to ensure that everyone –including children, the elderly, and those with special needs – get the best possible help.”

Meanwhile, San Pablo police are continuing to accept donations of food and supplies at it headquarters at 13880 San Pablo Ave. that they are personally delivering to assist in the relief effort.  Among the accepted items are store-bought food and personal hygiene products.

Fayeman advised against delivering items to the shelter, saying they only have the ability to care for evacuees and they are unable to process the donations.

“Donations are best given to Goodwill, Salvation Army, Food Bank, anyplace like that [the Red Cross] also partners with,” Fayeman said.

Those wanting to volunteer with the Red Cross should not just show up at the shelter, but rather sign up here.

Contra Costa College cancelled classes and athletic events and closed offices today due to the poor air quality caused by the massive North Bay fires. For the same reason, the West Contra Costa Unified School District also closed all schools today.