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Colorado Wildfires 2012: How You Can Help Those Affected

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Smoke billows from a wildfire west of Colorado Springs, Colo. on Saturday, June 23, 2012. The fire has grown to an estimated 600 acres and The Gazette reports authorities are evacuating the exclusive Cedar Heights neighborhood as well as the Garden of the Gods nature center.
Smoke billows from a wildfire west of Colorado Springs, Colo. on Saturday, June 23, 2012. The fire has grown to an estimated 600 acres and The Gazette reports authorities are evacuating the exclusive Cedar Heights neighborhood as well as the Garden of the Gods nature center.

As Colorado continues to battle the worst wildfire season the state has seen in a decade, relief agencies are stepping in to help out victims who have lost everything.

The Waldo Canyon and High Park Fires have already claimed at least one life and 87,000 acres since they started raging on June 9, CNN reports. Smoke has closed in on tourist destinations such as Pike's Peak and Estes Park. One of the more recent fires near Colorado Springs prompted evacuation orders for 11,000 people, according to the Associated Press.

While President Barack Obama declared the state a “disaster area” on Friday, allowing federal aid for the affected areas, the more than 36,000 residents who have been forced to evacuate, and the hundreds of animals have been displaced, still need help from the non-governmental organizations that are assisting victims around the clock.

And as nonprofits supplement federal aid, they need volunteers, donations and financial help to keep going. Find out how you can help the agencies that are doling out life-saving aid:

Salvation Army

Salvation Army volunteers are hard at work sorting, packing, transporting and distributing donated goods and feeding an estimated 3,000 people per day, 9news.com reports. The organization has asked those who want to help to make monetary contributions. "The best thing they can do for us is to make a financial gift," Sherry Munso, of the Salvation Army, told the news source. "This is going to be a long process ... people are going to need some long-term help.” Learn how you can make a donation here.

Adventist Community Services LIFT

The Adventist Community Services Disaster Response team has opened a donation collection and distribution center and is desperate for help. The organization is predominantly seeking personal care items, shoes, clothing, canned food, bedding, cleaning supplies, diapers and pet food for the evacuees it is serving. You can make a financial donation here or send donated items to: 5045 West 1st Avenue Denver, CO 80219.

Colorado Red Cross

The Colorado Red Cross has set up five shelter locations and one evacuation center and encourages those affected to register their evacuation status at Safe and Well. Learn how you can volunteer your time here. Find out how you can make a financial donation here or text the word "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation via your cell phone bill.

North Shore Animal League

To reduce the chances of evacuated animals getting euthanized, and to help reunite pets with their owners, the North Shore Animal League has teamed up with National Mill Dog Rescue to dispense rescue teams and is bringing lost animals to its national headquarters or to its shelter partners. Find out how you can make a donation here.

Larimer Humane Society

The Larimer Humane Society is coordinating the rescue of all animals in the High Park fire zone and reuniting owners with lost animals, and providing temporary shelter for evacuated animals. For any animal-related concerns call 970-226-3647 x7 and learn how you can make a donation here.

Click through the slideshow below to see images of Colorado's devastating wildfires:

Colorado Wildfires 2012
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