News Briefs


Nonprofit offering help for fire victims, seeks donations

The Greater Malibu Disaster Recovery Project, or Gumdrop, is available to assist those who have been hurt by the most recent fires and who have not or will not qualify for assistance from insurance and other conventional helpers for those in need.

Gumdrop was founded by community leaders Lou Drobnick, the Rev. David Worth and others following the 1993 fire. It has remained dormant through a lengthy quiet period for Malibu disasters. Because of the two recent fires, Gumdrop will be seeking cash donations from every member of the greater Malibu community for distribution to those needing assistance. The organization will carefully monitor and evaluate all requests for aid, consistent with the leadership of the well-known community members on its board.

Gumdrop, with the help of the city, is establishing an office this week. The phone number is 310.456.2489 ext. 301. Fax information will be available shortly. An emergency e-mail address of has been established. A permanent address will be announced soon.

In addition to financial assistance, psychological aid will be furnished for those needing help dealing with the trauma of their losses. Services are offered to all residents of the greater Malibu area, regardless of whether they living within the city limits.

Gumdrop is actively seeking donations. Checks should be made payable to Greater Malibu Disaster Recovery Project and mailed to GMDRP, P.O. Box 6321, Malibu, CA 90264-6321. Donations are tax deductible and a receipt for the full amount of the cash donation will be furnished. Requests for assistance may also be sent to the same address as well as by e-mail.

The Gumdrop board members are President Bill Sampson, attorney; Vice President Lou Drobnick, Pepperdine University vice chancellor; Secretary Rebekah Evans, Malibu Chamber of Commerce executive director; Treasurer Frank Brady, HRL Laboratories director of human resources, treasurer; Mark Olson, Southern California Edison regional manager; Anne Payne, retired school teacher; Greg Hughes, Malibu Presbyterian Church pastor; Brad Davis, Malibu Emergency Services coordinator and Mark Ball, owner of Mark Ball Farmers Insurance.

Assistance center open at Bluffs Park

The state of California, along with county and city officials and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has opened a local assistance center at Bluffs Park, located across from Pepperdine University at 24250 Pacific Coast Highway.

The center is open through Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday.

“The Malibu center will serve anyone affected by the fire who may need recovery information,” said FEMA official Mike Hall. “We want to be sure that we’ve reached fire-affected residents in the Malibu area who may have questions on available disaster recovery assistance or FEMA registration.”

Fire victims are encouraged to register with FEMA before they visit the center by calling 800.621.FEMA (3362). The hearing-impaired can call 800.462.7585. Online registration is available at The deadline to apply is Jan. 9.

At the Malibu LAC, those affected by the fire can get information on:

€ FEMA rental assistance and emergency home repairs

€U.S. Small Business Administration low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes

€ Additional state grants to help with rental assistance, emergency home repairs, and other needs

€ National Flood Insurance to guard against losses from mudslides where vegetation has burned

€ Disaster unemployment assistance

€ Crisis counseling information

€ Advice on insurance matters.

Fashion show fundraiser to include fire victim charity collection

Cindy Crawford announced that the fashion show that will kick off the campaign for the Boys & Girls Club of Malibu Friday evening on the Malibu High School campus will also serve to encourage in the collection and distribution of gift certificates from clothing stores.

The event will take place at The Club’s new facilities, and will kick off at 7 p.m. with a special, VIP ribbon-cutting event for the new building, which was built this summer with a $100,000 donation from Chris and Pax Prentiss. A collection site will be set up at the tent along with a runway and music.

Malibu celebrities expected to attend the event in addition to host Crawford are Dean Cain, Rande Gerber, Kenny G, Ricky Schroeder, Daniel Stern, Martin Sheen, Roma Downey and Mark Burnett.

For more information, call 310.457.1400.

Artifac Tree helping out

The Artifac Tree is accepting donations to assist victims of the recent fires. The thrift shop, located at 3728 1/2 Cross Creek Rd., is also holding a half-price sale on Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Artifac Tree was founded came when fire devastated the Malibu community in 1970. Honey Coatsworth was the president and founder of the thrift shop set up in 1973 to coordinate with other organizations and volunteers to help the community in time of great need.

Meeting on Legacy Park project prior to EIR drafting

A hearing will take place at City Hall on Dec. 5 to receive information on the Malibu Legacy Park project. Called a scoping session, the purpose of the meeting is to gather additional information in preparation for the project’s environmental impact report.

The Legacy Park project includes the creation of a city park on the city-owned Chili Cook-Off site that will be part of a sophisticated wastewater/storm water treatment facility. An initial report on the different elements of the project to be used for the hearing can be found on the city’s Web site at On the left side, click “City Departments,” then go to “Environmental and Community Development,” followed by “Planning Division,” then “Planning Project Decisions and Notices,” then “Environmental Projects and CEQA Notices” and lastly, “Malibu Legacy Park Project – Scoping Meeting.”

Malibu Presbyterian prepares for rebuilding fundraiser

Malibu Presbyterian Church and Preschool officials say their fundraiser taking place on Saturday from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. is shaping up to be a big success. They have added a silent auction to the garage sale with items including $5,000 worth of orthodontics, two teeth bleachings worth $350 apiece, gift certificates, a swag bag from the television show “Bones,” a landscaping design consultation, jewelry and more.

The fundraiser is being held in conjunction with the Agoura Hills/Calabasas Community Center’s annual Community Garage Sale. The Community Center is located at 27040 Malibu Hills Road in Calabasas. Donations are being accepted until 3 p.m. on Friday. Those with items to include in the garage sale should take them directly to the Community Center. Those with items for the silent auction should contact Kathryn Palmer at or by calling 310.266.7235. All donations are tax deductible.

For more information, e-mail Palmer and put “MalibuPresFundraiser” in the subject line. Further information can also be obtained at;

Beverly Hills fundraiser to help Malibu Presbyterian

The Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church will donate all proceeds from its 30th annual Christmas Celebration on Dec. 8 to the Malibu Presbyterian Church’s rebuilding fund. To support the fundraising effort, Cindy Crawford will read the Christmas story. Beverly Hills Presbyterian Pastor Dave Worth was the pastor at Malibu Presbyterian from 1976 to 1999.

The evening concert will feature performances by the Choral Society of Southern California and the Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church Chancel Choir and Chamber Orchestra. Under the direction of Nick Strimple, the 50 voice choir and 26 member orchestra will perform the Christmas section from Handel’s “Messiah.”

The event begins at 7 p.m. The church is located at 505 North Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. Tickets are $25 per adult or two for $40. Student and senior tickets are $15. Reservations may be made by calling 310.271.5194. Additional cash or check donations will be accepted at the fundraiser.

Soccer outfit donations accepted at Bluffs Park

Bluffs Park is a donation and collecting site for this year’s AYSO soccer outfits and equipment. The office will have a bin up for donations through Dec. 21

Uniforms from an entire team could be sent directly to an AYSO inner-city squad. The individual pieces not making a full team are donated to help outfit international leagues and teams. For more information, call Roberta Bogie at 310.968.7800.

-Jonathan Friedman