MEDFORD, Ore. — Kelly's Automotive Service says that it wants to take in donated cars, fix them up, and donate them to families who have lost their vehicles — and likely their homes — to the recent devastating fires in southern Oregon.
Co-owner Lisa McClease-Kelly said that she was tearfully listening to the terrible news of the fires and wondering what to do. The idea that came to her was to take 10 cars, $10,000 of Kelly's money, and put them together to serve 10 families.
“There is just so much devastation, so many people hurting. We and our staff still have our homes, jobs and cars. There had to be something more that we could do to help,” said McClease-Kelly.
Kelly's has partnered with the local Salvation Army on the initiative. The organization will help with the paperwork and donation receipts for anyone who donates cars to the cause. Kelly's will then take the vehicles, give each one an inspection, and do any necessary work.
The cars can't be complete junkers, however. Kelly's is looking for cars from the year 2000 and newer, with little to no body damage, and in good running condition.
“We can’t do it all ourselves. Having the community donate nicer cars that need a little TLC is the best way to ensure more victims of the fires will have a car to drive. If we have to replace engines and transmissions or do bodywork, we can’t give away as many cars,” McClease-Kelly said.
According to Kelly's, the Salvation Army is in contact with a number of displaced families, and will help to find those most in need. Kelly's says it will contact other local non-profits to find others.
To donate a car, call Kelly’s Automotive Service in Grants Pass or Medford.
“This is a great opportunity to help the people who in our community that have been hit hard by the fires and maybe get a tax deduction as well,” said McClease-Kelly.