Mitigate and prepare for wildfire

Wildfire season is here! Use these tips, specifically for community-based organizations, to mitigate risk and prepare your community:

  • Mitigate fire risk to your properties so that you can continue to serve your communities:  

    • Create defensible space, a buffer you create between a building on your property and the grass, trees, shrubs, or any wildland area surrounding it. This space is needed to slow or stop the spread of wildfire, and it helps protect your home from catching fire. Good defensible space also provides firefighters a safe area to work in to defend your building. Check out Defensible Space - Ready for Wildfire for more information.    

    • Harden the property, which means making it more fire-resistant. Check out Hardening Your Home - Ready for Wildfire for more information.  

    • Choose plants and landscaping that create fire-resistant zones with non-flammable materials such as stone. Check out Fire-Resistant Landscaping for more information on what plants and materials to use.    

  • Look for funding from the California Office of Emergency Services Home Hardening Program, which intends to serve low- and moderate-income groups.   

  • Get involved in local planning processes. Seek out opportunities to influence the Hazard Mitigation Plan and General Plan, which will guide your local government on planning for future wildfires. Learn about these planning processes from the Association of Bay Area Governments.  

  • Work with your community to create a Wildfire Response Plan. Here's a great example from Home Forward, an affordable housing provider in Oregon. Reach out to your local Office of Emergency Services for support in creating the plan.   

  • Use the Enterprise Ready to Respond Toolkit to create a Business Continuity Plan for your residents, buildings, and operations.  

  • Invest in backup power and alternative energy sources to serve your community's needs during a power shutoff. Create a plan for power shutoffs.  

  • Apply for CalHome Disaster Assistance, which serves disaster survivor households up to 120 percent of Area Median Income. CalHome can fund pre-development, site development, and site acquisition for development projects, rehabilitation and acquisition and rehabilitation of site-built housing, restoration, repair, and replacement of manufactured homes, down payment assistance, mortgage financing, homebuyer counseling, and technical assistance.   

  • Use this legislative tracker to read about disaster and climate change bills and call your representatives about them.