In late November last year California was hit by its most destructive wildfire in history. For two weeks the Camp Fire spread over 150,000 acres affecting countless lives. After the devastating fire Arrowmen from all across the State of California took charge and stepped up in order to aid their communities and help their fellow Scouts and Scouters.
Gavin Cho is the W-4N section chief and helped lead his section after the devastating fire. “One thing that we recognized from the start was that because of the incredible damage that was caused by the wildfire we saw that, as an Order, it was an important time as any to come together under the bond of service and brotherhood,” Gavin said.
Each section in California was affected by the wildfire in numerous different ways and their chiefs made sure to keep close contact with each other to create unique solutions to each of their unique problems. “We obviously are always trying to be prepared in living up to the Scout Motto; but, we weren’t really able to be prepared to a wildfire of that magnitude and power.”
Where some portions were kept completely safe from the fire, many parts of Section W-4N had to be evacuated. After the fire members of Section W-4N organized supply drives for affected communities and lead numerous service projects; for example, constructing sifter boxes that can be used to clean-up ash from wildfires. “We had to recognize a pressing need that went beyond ourselves; our communities really needed us to be there,” Gavin added.
“Our needs were mainly in the moment; we had to keep watch for each other and stay cheerful and use this as an opportunity to strengthen our bonds as opposed to letting it tear ourselves apart,” stated Gavin. For now Section W-4N are working on creating a fundraiser patch that will help cover the cost of their service projects in response to the Camp Fire and other projects in the future that will help prepare them for aiding their communities in the event of any future fires.