Five years after the devastating 2018 Camp Fire in Northern California, the Butte County community continues to demonstrate extraordinary resilience. More than rebuilding, locals are addressing long-standing systemic gaps - collaborating to build an even stronger, more equitable future.
The Camp Fire, which decimated the town of Paradise, uncovered cracks in the county’s infrastructure - from food insecurity impacting families and children to preventable health issues rooted in adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). In the fire’s aftermath, cross-sector coalitions have mobilized to tackle these interrelated needs with proactive, compassionate solutions.
A food systems collaborative is expanding access to healthy, affordable food options. The Healthy Communities Collaborative takes a holistic approach to community wellbeing - implementing supportive programs and environments to reduce instances of chronic disease.
Most recently, the Butte Resilience Collaborative launched in August 2023, uniting over 100 representatives from local organizations serving vulnerable populations. Their mission is to build an inclusive, socially just network that strengthens resilience county-wide by filling resource gaps and elevating unheard voices.
The Collaborative Commons, committed to facilitating community-driven solutions through collaboration, serves as a key partner in supporting each of these collaboratives’ development. We bring experience convening diverse stakeholders and coaching collaborative skills from prior work assisting disaster recovery efforts and building local capacity across California.
Butte County’s collaborative response represents a promising shift - understanding that crises, while devastating, present opportunities to remake systems and structures for the better. Their coalitions recognize that true resilience means anticipating vulnerabilities and co-creating equitable solutions so all community members can thrive. We commend and continue supporting Butte County as they lead the way in resilient development.