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Monday, February 18 , 2019, 6:49 am | Fair 43º


Local Red Cross Staffer Deploying to Montana to Assist Wildfire Victims

Amy Lassere will help with soliciting and processing donations

Amy Lassere, major gifts officer with the American Red Cross Central Coast Region, will be leaving Saturday morning for Montana. She will be deployed as a fundraiser to assist with raising and processing donations received for the Montana wildfires.

Amy Lassere
Amy Lassere

Lassere has extensive experience in fundraising, including six years at UCSB in the Arts & Lectures program. She has been with Red Cross for almost one year, focusing her efforts on raising funds in Ventura County.

“I am excited to go and use my fundraising skills to help the people of Montana,” Lassere said. “I know that my deployment will help our region, as I will learn a tremendous amount about how to help during a disaster.”

Wildfires in the West have forced thousands of people from their homes, and the American Red Cross is offering those affected a safe place to stay, food to eat and emotional support. More than 355 people spent Thursday night in nine Red Cross shelters in Colorado and Montana.

Wildfires are burning across more than 200 square miles of central and southeastern Montana at this time. Trained disaster workers are bringing in truckloads of supplies and response vehicles are en route to support relief efforts. Red Cross workers are focused on providing emotional support and mental health services to families as they wait to learn about damage to their communities.

“Amy is a valuable member of our fundraising team at the Red Cross,” Regional CEO Jim McGee said. “I know she will not only be helpful to the Montana fundraising team, but as a part of the overall disaster relief effort. While the focus has been on the wildfires in Colorado, we know that disasters happen everywhere, and we are proud to send Amy to assist wherever she is needed.”

Lassere leaves Saturday and will be deployed for up to two weeks. She is taking along a flip video camera to document her experiences and to share with local Red Cross volunteers and staff upon her return.

— Jill Muchow Rode is the chief development officer for the American Red Cross Central Coast Region.

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