Aaron Rodgers, State Farm donate $2M to children impacted by Camp Fire, deadliest in California’s history

Camp Fire/Aaron Rodgers (Getty Images)

BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. — In November 2018, Green Bay Packers QB teamed up with State Farm, with the insurance company donating $1 for each retweet of his post up to $1 million to help those impacted by the Camp Fire as Rodgers, a Butte County native, pledged to personally donate $1 million. On Thursday, Oct. 24, State Farm officials announced Rodgers and the company committed to donating a combined $2 million “to bettering the lives of hundreds of children in the affected areas.”

The announcement was made ahead of the one-year anniversary of the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in California’s history.

Named after Camp Creek Road, its place of origin, the fire started on Nov. 8, 2018, in Butte County. The fire originated above several communities and an east wind drove the fire downhill through developed areas. After exhibiting extreme fire spread, fireline intensity, and spotting behaviors through the rural community of Concow, an urban firestorm formed in the densely populated foothill town of Paradise. The fire caused at least 85 civilian fatalities, with one person still missing, and injured 12 civilians, two prison inmate firefighters, and three other firefighters. It covered an area of 153,336 acres (almost 240 square miles), and destroyed 18,804 structures, with most of the damage occurring within the first four hours. Total damage was $16.5 billion. Drought was a factor. Paradise, which typically received five inches of rain each summer, got only one-seventh of an inch from the end of May until Nov. 12, 2018. With the arrival of the first winter rainstorm of the season, the fire reached 100% containment after seventeen days on Nov. 25, 2018.

According to a news release, State Farm officials gave Rodgers full reign in deciding where to donate the funds, and he created strict criteria for the decision process.

State Farm and Rodgers worked with the North Valley Community Foundation to give grants to more than 20 organizations, with the goal of supporting children’s in-school programs and extracurriculars.

Examples include:

  • Everybody Healthy Body was granted $50K to lead a task force on health, education, and physical activity (including sports) to address recovery efforts in the region.
  • Butte College Foundation, where Aaron began his collegiate football career, was granted $50K to establish the Skilled Workforce Scholarship to support students who are in danger of dropping out due to the Camp Fire.
  • Chico Westside Little League was granted $25K to fund repairs and refurbishment for their fields and facilities to accommodate the increased use due to its hosting Paradise Little League and the Paradise High School baseball team in wake of the Camp Fire.
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