Letter: How to approach financial giving for those displaced in the Marshall fire

This writing encourages supporting your closest circle impacted by the Marshall fire and going beyond, helping what I’d like to say are the less-known members of our community or what you might consider the underdogs.

My heart weeps for all those who have lost their homes, and I’m proactively volunteering and providing financial donations.

My challenge to you is expanding who you are financially supporting by either:

1) Scrolling through the many GoFundMe campaigns, selecting 1-3 drives where individuals or couples are receiving much less financial support, but they as people resonate with you on a personal level; or

2) Contributing to the general Boulder Community Foundation, where hopefully distributions will be fair and equal.

The ‘underdog’ may have a smaller network or circle because they don’t have kids in the school system, don’t work for a more significant sized employer that brings the opportunity to know more people or are retired.

For example, when scrolling the many GoFundMe pages, I came across an older man who never increased his property insurance from the time of purchase, so he’ll likely only get 20% of the value of his home.

Another example is a couple where one is a fitness instructor and the other an artist. We appreciate their talents, but they likely earn much less money yet bring so much to our community. We want them to remain in our community, but will they stay, or will the costs of living in Boulder County push them out along with the increased building material costs?

Unlike the more affluent with traditional career paths, they likely can’t reduce retirement savings in the short term to create more discretionary funds. In both instances, I’d consider these community members underdogs. Let’s continue to rally, rebuilding our community.

Kathy Warling-Smith


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