Fire Recovery for the Land & People

LandPaths’ beloved Rancho Mark West and Riddell Preserves were burned in the Glass and Walbridge Fires in September and August, 2020. Riddell is scarred by two miles of bulldozed fire breaks. Erosion control measures are needed immediately to protect Crane and Kelly Creeks at Riddell Preserve, and at Rancho Mark West the critically important Mark West Creek.

The land needs us.  
Hundreds of families – many of whom we have known and worked closely with for two decades – continue to be in need of healing and recovery. Without a doubt, our shared value of love for the land will bring us together to care for each other, regrow, and rebuild. 

The community needs us. 

To respond, LandPaths launched a new effort: Fire Recovery for the Land & People. We can and must provide recovery and healing, right now, for the land and people of Sonoma County. As we assessed the damage and the resources needed for restoration and rebuilding, we set and reached an initial goal to raise $100,000. This will be a long, many-phased process, especially at Rancho Mark West which has been the beloved home to summer camps, school programs, Outings, Vamos Afuera trips, and community stewardship and will require much work before people can return to the land. Here you can see an example of the funds from this campaign at work on the land. Our fundraising and recovery efforts continue.

Every donation of any and every size helps make vital work possible.

Can you help with a donation today? Your contribution will have an immediate impact where it’s needed most, including critical projects like these:  

  • $18,000 will purchase the supplies and tools needed for initial erosion mitigation at Riddell Preserve, where bulldozers cut 2 miles of fire line through riparian and grassland habitats.
  • $10,500 will hire a six-person crew of young adults in work experience programs for a week of fire recovery work.
  • $5,000 will purchase the needed materials to protect Mark West Creek from ash and debris from burned structures at Rancho Mark West. 
  • $1,200 provides scholarships for 4 children from fire-impacted families to participate in winter, spring, and summer camps – five days immersed in the Big Outside. 
  • $450 purchases wattles for essential erosion control efforts at Riddell Preserve. 
  • $240 sends 3 teens from fire-impacted families to Bayer Farm for a month of outdoor activities and safe peer connection.
  • $75 purchases supplies for a volunteer stewardship day spent healing the land at Riddell Preserve. 

Our preserves and the people of Sonoma County are at the center of all we do at LandPaths – from education to community celebrations, from pulling invasives to planting gardens, from Owl Camp adventures to quiet solo contemplation, and always with joy and common purpose. The needs are clear and urgent. 

Watch Rancho Mark West: Before and After the Fire, a video made by LandPaths’ Executive Director Craig Anderson.

When you make a gift today, you will help LandPaths to: 

  • Conduct essential erosion control and invasive plant mitigation before the winter rains at both Riddell Preserve and Rancho Mark West.
  • Make Rancho Mark West ready to welcome kids and families back as soon as possible.  
  • Provide fire-impacted youth with scholarships for our new, COVID-safe “Nourished by Nature” programs. 

Right now, we must rebuild, and connect our community to the land, and you can help.

We are grateful to all who are able to contribute through donations, volunteering, and partnership. 

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