“I haven’t seen one state, one county, one federal official at any one of the donation hubs where people are most suffering,” he said. “People are sleeping in their cars. People are asking for specific items now.” -Kai Lenny
Kai is leading a citizen-run recovery effort on the island and says there are people in the fire zone haven’t seen a government employee in days. Kai heard pleas from friends for help and responded with a “boots on the ground” effort to bring supplies to those in need.
FEMA says they have more than 380 employees on the ground and more than 190 search and rescue team members deployed. The Red Cross has 250 disaster workers in the area.
“FEMA personnel continue to have a presence in West Maui, helping survivors register for assistance. In Lahaina, FEMA has met with community members at local relief centers and provided flyers explaining how survivors can register for assistance. At the direction of Maui County and emergency management officials, FEMA disaster assistance personnel have been working in numerous shelters with displaced survivors. The agency is working closely with Maui County emergency management to branch out to more locations to continue meeting survivors where they are.”
Lenny said volunteers, many of whom have lost their own homes and loved ones, have been working tirelessly since the tragic fire:
“I wonder if the state, county, they believe we’re doing such a good job, they don’t need to step in. But a lot of these volunteers have been going all day, all night for five, six days now and are exhausted and are waiting for a handoff, or at least a break.”
As of yesterday confirmed there have been 101 confirmed deaths and more than 1,000 people remained unaccounted for. If you would like to contribute to a GoFundMe that Kai has linked to through his socials to aid Lahaina Families affected by the wildfire GO HERE: