February, 2023

Latest Updates from

Ventura Regional Fire Safe Council

VRFSC Team is ready to help start Firewise USA communities in Ventura County!

We are happy to announce that our team of Wildfire Safety Liaisons are regional coordinators for Firewise USA! Let us guide you through starting your own Firewise USA Neighborhood!

What is Firewise USA?

The Firewise USA® Program encourages local solutions for safety by involving homeowners in taking individual responsibility for preparing their homes from the risk of wildfire. The program provides resources to help homeowners learn how to adapt to living with wildfire and encourages neighbors to work together to take action now to prevent losses.

*BONUS BENEFIT* Firewise USA has the potential to help residents keep/lower fire insurance premiums.


Give us a call if you'd like more information on starting your own Firewise USA community!

(805) 746-7365

Preparing for Warmer Weather and Windy Days

VRFSC's Home Hardening program is starting the new year strong, building on the following successes from 2022:

  • 122 home hardening assessments completed
  • 18 home hardening workshops and 16 tabling events conducted
  • 1,183 community members reached through these events
  • 19 applications received for resident grant program
  • 2 houses received home hardening modifications

VRFSC is excited to build on these milestones in 2023! Please share our program with your neighbors and friends in Ventura County and have them make a Home Hardening appointment with us.

Learn More about the Home Hardening Program

Introducing Interim Executive Director Andy Ortega

Current Board Secretary Andy Ortega has been named the Interim Executive Director of the Ventura Regional Fire Safe Council, as Jill Santos has chosen to resign. While Jill has left in search of other opportunities, we are grateful for her service to the organization and wish her the best in her future endeavors.

We would like to reassure you that all projects will continue during this transition period. Our team strongly believes this transition period will allow for a stronger, more unified vision for the organization’s future.

About Andy Ortega

Andy Ortega, a retired Assistant Fire Chief of Ventura County Fire Department, has served for 37 years with the Ventura County Fire Department. He grew up a son to a Ventura County firefighter, followed his fathers vocational footsteps and worked up through the ranks. He is well known by the team as an inspirational leader with strong vision and understanding of the organization. We hope you share our excitement at the expertise and guidance Andy will provide to the organization until a new Executive Director is promoted or hired.

Learn more about Andy Ortega here.

Upcoming Wildfire Preparedness Workshop

Click here to download flyer (English/Spanish PDF)

Statewide Wildfire Efforts

Expand our Local Programs

California Wildfire & Forest Resilience Taskforce

On February 2nd, nearly 350 people gathered for the Southern California Regional Taskforce Meeting. The Taskforce was created by the Newsom administration to align the activities across the state as it related to wildfire resilience and forest health. It is part of the $2.8 billion Action Plan created by the Gavin Newsom administration to boost wildfire resilience and forest health.

Thanks to these funds we have created our top two programs, Home Hardening and Resident Grant programs to help create a fire safe Ventura County.

Learn more about the meeting here
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