Lynda Nahra of Pacific Western Bank Central Coast, with Steve Ortiz of United Way of Santa Barbara County. (Courtesy photo)

Pacific Western Bank has donated $100,000 to the United Way Thomas Fire and Flood Fund to assist in rebuilding the Santa Barbara and Ventura County communities ravaged by disaster.

The local United Way offices established the fund in December and later extended it to benefit flood victims. All of the donations will support those in communities affected by the wildfires and flooding.

“As we emerge from this disaster, it is clear that many face significant hurdles in rebuilding their lives,” said Lynda Nahra, Pacific Western Bank Central Coast regional president.

“Our intent is to contribute in a manner that can quickly and efficiently reach those most in need. After much research I am pleased that United Way, through its Thomas Fire and Flood Fund, will best help us achieve our objectives in contributing to the recovery,” she said.

To date, more than $3 million has been raised for the Thomas Fire and Flood Fund, United Way reports.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of Pacific Western Bank and so many others, as well as by their drive to help the thousands who have been hurt,” said Steve Ortiz, United Way of Santa Barbara County president/CEO, and Eric Harrison, president/CEO, United Way of Ventura County, in a joint statement.

“We’re saddened that so many suffered losses we can never return to them, but we’re committed to helping this community rebuild and continue to thrive,” they said.

After the Thomas Fire started, local community partners determined the United Way groups in both counties are qualified to manage the disaster fund, accept contributions, make distributions, promote the fund, and report to the community on how the funds were used, United Way said.

— Angel Pacheco for United Way of Santa Barbara County.