Family feared losing home to Creek Fire, now they fear for daughter's health if they return

While the family's Meadow Lakes house still stands, the toxic ash inside and out makes it too dangerous to bring the 7-year-old girl with a bone marrow condition home.
MEADOW LAKES, Calif. (KFSN) -- Jessica Alvarez and her family haven't been back to their Meadow Lakes house since the Creek Fire forced them to evacuate.

Her 7-year-old daughter, Alia, has a rare bone marrow condition and lung issues, so while the family's house still stands, the toxic ash inside and out makes it too dangerous to bring the young girl home.

"We had a hygienist come out, home restoration people come, no one can guarantee it will be safe. There's ash, the devastation was really great," Alvarez says. "I think we're in a spot no one has been before. There is no hope. There is no help."

She has reached out to everyone she can think of to get help - local officials, state lawmakers.

She even met with Governor Gavin Newsom and newly elected vice president Kamala Harris.

While the kind words offered some hope, Alvarez is still waiting for assistance.

"If the governor of California wasn't able to offer us help, then who?" she says.

Fresno County supervisor Nathan Magsig admits this is a unique situation.

Typically, FEMA aid requires families to meet certain requirements.

"With the individual assistance from FEMA, someone needs to have a home that's been lost or damaged by the fire," says Magsig.

State Assemblymember Jim Patterson says his staff is also working with the California Insurance Commissioner on the case but has yet to get an answer that will help the family.

"We have a unique situation that could be solved by this stopgap insurance that the fair plan should be. We're going to keep knocking on the door on her behalf to get an answer," he says.

The family feels like they've run out of places to turn.

But 7-year-old Alia still has hope that she'll soon have a place to call home once again.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.