José Andrés' World Central Kitchen Will Prepare 2,000 Meals for Victims of the California Wildfires
At this point, one cannot overstate the positive impact José Andrés has had on disaster relief this year. He—working alongside his non-profit World Central Kitchen, and sometimes acting alone, like when he drove through Houston alone, feeding as many people as could with supplies he bought at Target, before backup arrived—has consistently been one of the first people on the scene to feed the victims of natural disasters, most notably in Puerto Rico where he has by now served three million meals (more than FEMA) in the wake of Hurricane Maria. Now, he’s expanding his mission of service to the people of Southern California, where wildfires are ripping through the area, destroying homes and livelihoods.
Today, World Central Kitchen, working with L.A. Kitchen, plans to feed 2,000 people in the Los Angeles and Ventura areas. According to the New York Times, hundreds of thousands of people have already had to evacuate from these cities.
Yesterday, Andrés connected with the Red Cross via Twitter, after he found a distribution center where he could set up his operation. Andres explained that L.A. and World Central kitchens were already on their way to Los Angeles with 400 meals, and planned to serve at least a thousand more over the next week. Today, Andres jumped back on Twitter to request volunteers for the L.A. Kitchen operation, which needs a hand preparing the 2,000 meals the organization hopes to serve.
As Eater points out, World Central Kitchen was not founded as a disaster relief organization, but in a year pockmarked by devastating natural disasters, Andrés has stepped up to feed those in need—better than even the federal government in some cases—no strings attached. He is one of those rare, pure souls who have no other agenda than to help, and helping he is, in the most important, necessary way that he can.