by Kathleen Maclay, volunteer contributor, American Red Cross
Evan Jacobs, the Santa Rosa 7th-grader who spearheaded a project building free sifter boxes for residents affected by the Valley Fire, met Saturday with Cobb Mountain residents who are sharing the items constructed by Evan, his fellow scouts with the Redwood Empire Council, Boy Scouts of America in Sonoma and Mendocino counties, and a range of eager partners.
The boy modestly accepted kudos at the Mountain Lions’ Club in Cobb, which had a fresh supply of the items quickly produced by Evan and dozens of other scouts in between classes, homework and a bit of sleep. The scouts did the hammering, while adult leaders in the council handled the power tools.
“People are going through a lot of water, and a lot of sifters,” said Johnny Cappa, president of the Mountain Lions’ Club, where sifters were being distributed to anyone with the need.
Danny Ventress of Cobb stopped by the club house to lend a hand sharing supplies from sifter boxes to clean-up kits from the Red Cross, dog bones and gloves to sleeping bags. While his own home is safe to return to, Ventress said he’s been busy helping friends and neighbors sift through the charred remains of their homes.
“That’s great,” said Ventress after inspecting the council’s sifter boxes. “The boys ought to be darned proud.”
Among the business partners supporting the Redwood Empire Council were Agwood Mill and Lumber in Ukiah, which contributed all the lumber and pre-cut it to size; local Coldwell Banker agents who made financial donations; Lowe’s hardware, which discounted prices on materials and transported them; and Amy’s Kitchen, which offered up its parking lot for a maker space for the scouts.
The boy scouts are prepared to provide more sifters if the need arises.