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Agencies in Local Assistance Center Help in the Days Following San Bruno Fire
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By Santral Lusin, American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter
September 14, 2010
Darla Mumson Shares Her Experience in the Local Assistance Center After San Bruno Fire
Darla Mumson from the San Mateo County Human Services Agency was one of the first partners on the scene at the Local Assistance Center following the San Bruno Fire on Sept. 9. (Credit: Donna Stroop, American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter)
Darla Mumson from San Mateo County Human Services Agency recalls being notified Thursday night that she would be put on standby to partner and bring services, through the Local Asistance Center, to the individuals affected by the San Bruno Fire. She recalls just how many people were in need of help initially following the fire on Thursday night. 
“There was so much outpouring of support, it was wonderful to see but overwhelming and a bit surprising – but in a good way,” said Mumson. “Local businesses and people really came together.”
In her days working at the Local Assistance Center, Mumson noticed that many of those affected by the fire who sat down to speak with her seemed fine at first. “But when you start talking with them, their emotions came up and they began to cry,” said Mumson. “Thankfully we have Red Cross mental health (volunteers) here, and we connected them that way.”
“It’s sad to hear the stories from the clients. Being here you really feel it when you see someone breakdown in front of you,” said Mumson. All around the Local Assistance Center is what Mumson described as the “walking wounded,” as the looks on their faces were that of total devastation and shock. “It’s not about us. It’s all about them and what they need,” concluded Mumson.

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