5 ways to help victims of the Maui wildfires

Wildfires have devastated the Hawaiian island of Maui.

With a current death toll of 93, a number that is expected to climb in coming days, the fires are the deadliest out country has seen in a century. More than $1.3B worth of property has been damaged, according to a preliminary estimate.

The New York Times and NBC are providing live updates on the disaster, which has destroyed more than 2200 structures across the island. Tourists and residents alike were driven out, with some families floating in the Pacific Ocean for hours waiting to be rescued.

Nonprofits and local services are on the ground, feeding and sheltering displaced locals, helping tourists get home, finding missing person and pets, and more.

Here are five of the most effective ways to support them:

1. Donate directly to local charities

The best way to provide relief is to donate to local nonprofits who understand the community they serve. Maui United Way is a 77-year-old nonprofit focusing on the impact areas of education, income and health for Maui residents.

Donate to Maui United Way at this link.

Highly recommended by locals, the Hawai’i Community Foundation’s Maui Strong Fund is providing rapid response and recovery for Maui locals.

Donate to the Maui Strong Fund using this link.

Volunteers sort and organize donated supplies to distribute to fire victims in the aftermath of the wildfires in western Maui in Wailuku, Hawai’i.
Credit: PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images

2. Donate your Hawaiian Airlines miles

You can donate your miles to charities including the American Red Cross of Hawai’i and local animal shelters.

Donate to Hawaiian Airlines miles using this link.

3. Buy from Hawaiian businesses

This list from Honolulu Magazine spotlights local small businesses donating proceeds of their sales to disaster relief. Many of these businesses have online stores, which means you can support them no matter where you are in the world.

Buy from participating businesses at this link.

People pull water and supplies from a small raft on a beach,

Volunteers unload supplies at Black Rock Beach in Lahaina.
Credit: YUKI IWAMURA/AFP via Getty Images

4. Help feed the people of Oahu or donate to restaurant workers

This comprehensive list from Honolulu Magazine includes ways to donate to restaurants making meals for survivors, restaurants donating their proceeds to relief efforts, and GoFundMe pages for restaurants and workers affected by the fires. Before donating to a GoFundMe, check the platform’s tips for ensuring the campaign is authentic at this link.

Help feed Maui residents at this link.

5. Donate to the American Red Cross of Hawai’i

There many ways to support the efforts of Maui’s local American Red Cross as they deliver direct relief to victims on the island, from donating hotel points to stock.

Donate to the American Red Cross of Hawai’i at this link.


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