Laguna Blanca Raises Funds

By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   February 22, 2018

On Tuesday, February 13, Laguna families came together at SOhO Restaurant & Music Club in the name of love and music to benefit Direct Relief and all those affected by the Thomas Fire and Montecito mudslides.

In addition to helping others and enjoying an evening of music by Laguna’s talented students, guests heard from Laguna student and the band’s drummer, Clay Rodgers (Class of 2018), whose family home was hit hard by the devastating debris flow on January 9. He recounted how he and his father were awakened by the destruction in the pre-dawn hours, and how they eventually waded through waist-deep mud for a mile before getting picked up by a sheriff.

Clay’s mother, brother, and family dog were down in L.A. at the time of the mudslide. Although his family lost many treasured heirlooms, musical instruments, furniture, and family photos, Clay stays focused on how grateful he is that his family is unharmed and that material possessions can be replaced.

Samir Rai from Direct Relief also shared how their humanitarian aid organization has helped Santa Barbara through these recent disasters, from recognizing the need for and providing thousands of protective masks for residents during the Thomas Fire, to committing $300,000 to the 1/9 Victims Fund. Direct relief has equipped emergency responders with many of their requested resources, strengthened public health efforts with several thousand doses of tetanus and hepatitis-A vaccinations, and continues to support community groups, including the SB Bucket Brigade, providing supplies for safe cleanup and recovery.

Proceeds from the door, SB Strong T-shirt sales – designed by Sofia Fouroohi-Martin (Class of ’19) – and donations to Direct Relief on February 13 totaled nearly $5,000. 


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