Precipitation totals are breaking records including in San Francisco, which on Jan. 4 marked the wettest 10-day period since January 1862. Snow totals in the Sierra Nevada mountain range are approaching what is typical for an entire season. While the moisture is helping relieve immediate drought concerns, experts say it will take more than these storms to remove California’s long-term drought.

As of Jan. 11, at least 17 people have died in the storms that have brought high winds (think tornado or hurricane-force wind speeds with gusts as high as 100 mph), massive flooding and power outages. And it’s not over yet. The severe weather is expected to continue well into the third full week of January, with Governor Newsom stating that there would be at least three more atmospheric rivers before Jan. 18. Experts say the damage from weeks of storms could exceed $1 billion dollars, making this the first billion-dollar disaster of 2023 in the U.S.

There are a few ways that you can help:

  • CDP is raising funds to support our grantee partners in California. We have been working in the state for years through our California Wildfire Recovery Fund and are extremely familiar with the frontline service providers – especially those who are working with underserved and under-resourced communities, including non-English speakers, migrant farm workers, the unhoused, people with disabilities and older adults. Our funds focus on supporting long-term recovery, as we know the needs will continue for years to come as communities work to rebuild and recover. Donations can be made to our Disaster Recovery Fund by selecting “California Storms” from the drop-down menu, or by contacting our development team.
  • Support one of the frontline organizations working in emergency relief by giving them sustainable, flexible, long-term funding to support their capacity to respond in the weeks, months and years to come. CDP is tracking these organizations and can help funder organizations with recommendations. Contact to get information about these organizations.
  • If you are a funder, please consider attending Philanthropy California’s upcoming disaster briefing (CDP is co-sponsoring). Co-hosted by Philanthropy California, the League of California Community Foundations and the California Office of Emergency Services, this is an opportunity to discuss how philanthropy and the state can best collaborate to build community resilience and the steps that must be taken to shift our approach to disaster response. The briefing will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023, from 1-2 p.m. PST. Please register here if you are interested.

Read the full article about supporting California in the wake of flooding by Tanya Gulliver-Garcia at the Center for Disaster Philanthropy.