What is the 805 UndocuFund?

The Thomas Fire that struck Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties in December 2017 was the largest fire in California’s history, made worse by the devastating mudslides that followed. The wildfire, hazardous air quality conditions, school closures and subsequent mudslides – which severed freeway access for commuters – led to economic impacts such as destroyed and damaged apartments and homes, lost jobs, increased childcare expenses and other costs for many across the region. Affected immigrants include our friends, neighbors, coworkers, and fellow students. Many care for our children and elderly parents; clean our homes and hotel rooms; cook and serve our restaurant meals; maintain our lawns and landscaping; and tend to and harvest the fruits and vegetables that are the backbone of our regional economy.

The 805 UndocuFund is a collective effort to ensure that undocumented individuals and families impacted by natural disasters have the support they need in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties where many have put down deep roots.

How will the Fund help undocumented immigrants?

The Fund assists individuals and families who have lost their homes, wages, and/or employment due to natural disasters with expenses including but not limited to temporary housing, home repairs, rent, groceries, childcare expenses due to disaster related school closure, essential household items, clean-up items, medical and dental expenses, tools and equipment required for work, school supplies, repair of essential vehicles, moving and storage expenses, legal document replacement and funeral and burial expenses. The 805 UndocuFund will also help affected families access other community resources to provide some economic relief.

What is your fundraising goal?

Our goal is to raise at least $1 million to give a meaningful level of assistance to help individuals and families recover from natural disasters.

Who is involved?

The 805 UndocuFund is a partnership among Ventura and Santa Barbara County-based grassroots organizations that have a solid reputation, strong track record, and are known to and trusted by many undocumented residents: Mixteco/Indigenous Community Organizing Project (MICOP), CAUSE, and Future Leaders of America (FLA). The McCune Foundation is providing leadership support.

How are the funds managed?

The Ventura County Community Foundation provides fund administrative support. VCCF is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity; VCCF’s tax identification number is 77-0165029.

To donate you can go to https://vccf.org/805-undocufund-donation/. Donations at or over $1,000 are preferable by check payable to Ventura County Community Foundation and mailed to 4001 Mission Oaks Blvd, Suite A, Camarillo, CA 93012. Write “805 UndocuFund” in the memo line.

Why do you need a fund specifically for undocumented immigrants?

Unlike other natural disaster victims, undocumented immigrants do not qualify for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), disaster unemployment benefits or some public safety net programs. Even when they or their children are eligible for disaster relief services, their lack of immigration status, limited English proficiency, and fear of immigration enforcement prevent them from seeking assistance. Their discomfort or lack of familiarity with law enforcement, county government, and mainstream aid organizations present additional barriers.

How many undocumented immigrants are affected?

An estimated 126,000 undocumented immigrants live and work in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties, the area that has been hardest hit by recent wildfires and its aftermath. Undocumented immigrants predominantly work in sectors that have been or will be hard hit, including service, hospitality, child and elder care, day labor, and agriculture. Many lose wages in the weeks following natural disasters, and others work for companies whose operations are affected at varying levels, from temporary disruption to complete loss.

Who is eligible for support from the 805 UndocuFund?

Undocumented immigrants, including mixed-status families, who are residents of Ventura or Santa Barbara Counties who have experienced loss of housing, vehicle, essential possessions, wages, jobs, increased childcare expenses or other economic hardship due to the natural disasters, are eligible for assistance.  Local farmworkers, regardless of immigration status, are eligible for assistance.

What is the application process?

We are now holding application clinics throughout the region.  If you know someone who needs to apply, they can fill out this form and we will call them to make an appointment.  They can also call or text 805-200-8471 to make an appointment.

The streamlined application process utilizes a simple intake form, which is completed by volunteers and community partner organizations. Volunteers and staff have been specifically trained on the 805 UndocuFund intake and referral process. Once an application has been submitted, it undergoes a review process that includes verification and other due diligence.

Who oversees the 805 UndocuFund?

A steering committee of nonprofit organizations including CAUSE, FLA, MICOP, and the McCune Foundation has established the eligibility criteria, developed a streamlined application process, and guidelines for determining disaster relief.

How does the 805 UndocuFund guard against fraud?

A set of procedures are in place to ensure that funds go to families and individuals who meet the eligibility criteria. Provision of false information will result in immediate disqualification for assistance.

Is my donation tax deductible?

Yes, your donation is made to a 501(c)(3) organization and is tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Are you accepting donations of water, clothing, furniture etc.?

No thank you.

How can I support the 805 UndocuFund?

  • Tell your friends, family and colleagues to donate. More information at www.805undocufund.org
  • Like our Facebook page (Doing so helps us reach more people.)
  • Hold a fund drive