NAPA, CA — The Comité Champagne, which represents all the wine producers and grape growers in Champagne, France, has donated $120,000 to the fire relief efforts of The Salvation Army in Napa and Sonoma counties. Maxime Toubart, co-president of the Comité Champagne and president of the Champagne Growers Union, presented the donation to California State Senator Bill Dodd at his 18th Annual Fund-A-Need Holiday Event held at the Silverado Resort and Spa in Napa.
“Champagne values the relationships we have built over the years with our colleagues in Napa and Sonoma,” Toubart stated during the event. “We were saddened to hear of the devastation to these communities caused by the recent wildfires. On behalf of Comité Champagne, please accept this contribution of $120,000 to start the Fund-A-Need effort.”
“We are grateful to the Champagne region for its generous support,” said Dodd. “With the catastrophic and deadly fires that raged through the North Bay, I felt compelled to incorporate relief efforts in my Annual Holiday Event. The Salvation Army had a significant presence locally by staffing and feeding thousands of people in shelters as well as feeding many of the first responders. It is an honor to support them and the incredible work they’ve done to help those affected by the fires.”
October’s Northern California wildfires destroyed more than 8,800 structures and killed 44 people. Nearly 190,000 acres were burned in Napa and Sonoma counties alone.
Linda Reiff, President and CEO of the Napa Valley Vintners, and Michael Haney, Director of Membership and Government Relations of the Sonoma County Vintners, attended the celebration and joined Senator Dodd and Toubart on stage for the presentation.
“Champagne has been a longtime friend and partner to Napa Valley and Sonoma County in our global efforts to protect wine growing place names,” said Reiff. “We are enormously grateful for their generosity to help our communities rebuild following the devastating fires.”
Haney added, “Our communities suffered great losses due to the fires, but the outpouring of support from our friends in Champagne as well as so many others has been far greater than we could have imagined. We are forever thankful.”
All proceeds made to Senator Dodd’s 2018 Holiday Fund-A-Need Event will go directly to The Salvation Army and specifically target those affected by the fires in Napa and Sonoma counties. In the first seven days, they provided meals to evacuees and first responders; over 22,386 in Napa County and over 39,901 in Sonoma County. For the next six months, they will operate and staff the local post-fire relief centers where they provide food, clothing, gift cards and toiletries to local families. In addition, they will supply housing and utility subsidies to those displaced and to local service employees who find themselves out of work and struggling to make ends meet.
Thibaut Le Mailloux - Comité Champagne