Support available to students affected by California wildfires

Helicopter dropping water

As multiple wildfires burn in California, the Office of the Dean of Students has reached out to students whose homes and families may have been affected, reminding them of the resources available at the University of Oregon.

About 150 UO students list permanent addresses in the areas heavily affected by the California fires. Kris Winter, associate vice president for student life and dean of students, sent those students an email Nov. 14 offering support and connecting them with those on campus who are ready to help.

“Balancing personal concerns with student demands can be very stressful,” Winter said. “I wanted to let these students know that we are thinking of them and their communities, and that the UO is committed to helping them through this challenging time.”

The following resources are available:

  • The Office of the Dean of Students has crisis staff available for drop-in hours Monday-Friday, from 1-5 p.m. in Room 185, Oregon Hall. In addition, limited funds may be available through the Students in Crisis Fund to assist those who are experiencing financial need as a result of the tragedy.
  • University Counseling Center has drop-in hours from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, and from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Thursdays. Students can come in anytime during those hours and receive support.
  • The Duck Nest wellness center is a place where students can take a break, relax and learn about selfcare and stress management from their peers. It is in Room 041 on the ground floor of the EMU and is open every day except Sunday.
  • Financial aid staff are available to assist, if students have questions about their financial aid status due to a change in their family’s situation. They are located in Room 260, Oregon Hall and are open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • If students currently live in university housing and want to stay on campus over Thanksgiving break, the residence halls will be open. Housing’s website includes details for students wishing to stay during Thanksgiving, as well as information about staying on campus during winter break.  

For Ducks who want to help affected students, Winter suggests making a donation to the Students in Crisis Fund through the UO Foundation. Donors can go to the foundation website, enter the donation amount and note in the “additional gift instructions” text box that the donation is for “Students in Crisis — fund number 8113.”