During the night of November 7, there was a mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California. At the time, the bar was open to people age eighteen and older as part of the venue’s “College Country” themed night. There were over 100 people present, including many college students.
As of the writing of this post, there have been at least twelve casualties and about a dozen more injuries as a result of the attack. Although the scene has been secured and there is no longer an active threat, those who were present for the shooting are still processing the trauma they experienced.
Tragedies such as this can often leave us feeling angry, scared, and helpless. Here are some ways that you can help those affected by the attack, whether you live across town or across the world from Thousand Oaks.
If You Have Been Directly or Indirectly Impacted:
- Check in with friends and family and mark yourself safe on social media if you are able to.
- Take advantage of local resources that may be applicable.
- There is an emergency information hotline at 805-465-6650.
- A Family Unification Center has been set up at 1375 E. Janss Rd in Thousand Oaks.
- Reach out to others and let them know how they can help you, even if that help is listening to you cry or offering a hug.
- If you need to talk to a trained crisis response volunteer, don’t hesitate to reach out to IMAlive, an anonymous online chat service. Situations like this can be chaotic and overwhelming. There is no shame in needing help processing what’s going on.
- Be gentle with yourself while dealing with the aftermath. Take time to be good to yourself by staying hydrated, taking breaks to relax, eating regularly, taking your medications, moving around, distracting yourself, and practicing other forms of self-care.
- In the coming days and weeks, try to maintain as normal of a routine as you can. Bigger tasks may seem overwhelming. Try breaking those tasks into smaller tasks and taking it one step at a time.
How To Help Others:
- Check on friends, family, or neighbors who may be feeling scared and hurt. Be there to listen to those who are affected, and ask them what you can do to support and comfort them. Focus on creating a safe space for expression and recovery for those who are hurting.
- Donate blood if you are able to. Even if you don’t live in or near Thousand Oaks, your donation can help hospitals to treat both victims and other patients who are in need of blood transfusions.
- Reach out to local victim support organizations to find out how you can help meet their needs.
- Be patient, be gentle, and be kind. These may seem like simple tasks, but they make a huge difference to everyone you interact with.
It can be hard to remain calm when we see events like this in the news, even if we are not directly impacted. If you find yourself struggling with difficult emotions or are in crisis, you can reach out to IMAlive to anonymously chat with a trained volunteer.
Our hearts are with those impacted by this attack. We urge you to be kind to yourself and to others.