By Rachel Wulff

CAMERON PARK (CBS13) – With more than 23,000 evacuees in the area and most shelters full, the need for temporary housing is great. That’s why there is an army of individuals making a difference in this dire time.

Gary Romero said the support he’s receiving at the Cameron Park Evacuation Shelter “is just incredible.”

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More than 70 evacuees there are thankful for a roof over their heads while they wait to see if they’ll have the same when they return.

“It looks like the fire is about a mile and a half away from my house,” said Romero.

“We had about five minutes to get out and they were serious because they were coming and hammering on the door,” said Randy Hill.

Those like Carol and Randy Hill who lost everything in Grizzly Flats were sleeping in their pickup with two dogs outside the shelter when help arrived from a good neighbor.

“I was just was talking to him and he said I’m two blocks away. I’ll give you my RV and you can sleep in it the entire time you are here and he wasn’t the only one. There was another lady who offered her RV on her property,” said Hill.

The Hills say well over 100 people have pulled up to help — people like Army veteran Guy Lussier, who’s on a mission.

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“We want to try and do what we can to help these people. They are in dire need,” said Lussier.

And then there was “Rev Deb” an episcopal priest serving donuts and coffee out of her car

“Coffee is the gateway drug to conversation, so it lets me sit down and hear their stories. Getting their names and putting their names of what they need in the resources in the community. So, people are offering money and rooms and I’m a matchmaker,” she said.

The outpouring of support is overwhelming for the Hills.

“It’s been the best of times and the worst of times — so many nice people,” Hills said.

And the American Red Cross appreciates the help.

“We had a lady with two big dogs and she was trying to stay in her car and a young man came by and saw it and he donated a tent. So keep it coming — we love it,” said a manager there.

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With many shelters full, many people are driving by and leaving donations. But the staff tells us not to do that because they don’t have the time or manpower due to covid protocols to go through it all. They prefer if you just donate money.