Northwest Florida FloodingThe Invisible Disaster The Role of Long Term Recovery Organizations in Disaster Recovery
Washington CountyJuly Flood Event Washington Co. Population: 25,000 FEMA PA Declaration no IA Declaration from FEMA, leaves county residents without any Federal Assistance
Washington County received over 40 inches of rain in a six week period. When the rain began in July of 2013, every county road was impacted.
Volunteers from the West Florida Baptist Association and local Volunteer Fire personnel began tarping roofs as heavy rains continued.
Emergency Management received 115 requests for home repairs, residents expecting FEMA assistance
Volunteer Firefighters unloading donated supplies from the Southern Baptist Association
Misunderstanding of the Emergency ProceduresFEMA PA Declaration challenges
This summer, Walton County received over 40 inches of rain in six weeks. At least 36 homes were damaged, as well as dozens of roads and other infrastructure .
FEMA PA Declaration made. No IA Declaration from FEMA, leaves county residents without any Federal Assistance
Walton County utilized local connections and resources Walton Co. Fire Rescue personnel tarp storm damaged roofs. Local small business provided Web site design and hosting. 211 engaged to assist with information and referrals Presentations to civic clubs to raise awareness and involvement.
Invisible Disaster Challenges • No State Declaration for disasters ( difficult to prove this actually happened when applying for grants) • Simple task, such as receiving tarps from State EM becomes a difficult process. EM had to rely on FLVOAD and Volunteer Florida to arrange the tarp delivery • Difficult to show the impact on the community (financial, emotional toll on individuals) • Local community is not aware of the amount of homes damaged and the impact on the affected population.
Without FEMA IA Declaration Disaster Recovery Falls Entirely Upon the Community. Catholic Charities of Florida Emergency Services reached out initially to Washington Co. then Walton Co. Emergency Management, to offer long term recovery assistance. Washington and Walton Co. E.M.s organized a meeting in their respective counties with local faith based and non-profit organizations establishing the Long Term Recovery Organization (LTRO) for each county.
LTRO Mission Statement The Washington and Walton County Long Term Recovery Organization will provide spiritual, emotional, physical and financial resources to those affected by disasters, regardless of race, gender, creed, color, sexual orientation, disability or religious preference. We aim to accomplish these goals by engaging the faith-based, non-profit and local community leaders in to a coordinated disaster recovery entity; utilizing case management to ensure the most vulnerable populations receive the assistance they need, and assist them with their own recovery.
LTRO a true community partnership Emergency Management provides leadership, contacts, meeting place, administrative help, too many others to list! CC of Fla: helping organize Long Term Disaster Recovery CCNWFL: Provides case management services Hammers and Hearts: Coordinating Volunteer Mission Teams and Construction/Repairs UMC of Al and W FL: providing volunteer mission teams for damaged home construction/repair United Church of Christ: Grants for Washington and Walton Counties. United way of West Florida: Fiscal Agent, donor and resource (Washington Co.) United Way of Okaloosa-Walton : Fiscal Agent, donor and resource Salvation Army supplies shower trailer, American Red Cross: support to mission teams 211 – information clearinghouse TCO Inc. – website design/hosting and support
Do you know who your local, state and national partners are? Have you identified local resources for disaster recovery? A list of partners? Are you sure your partners have the capacity and the ability to respond and be part of long term recovery Do you know the difference between case workers and case managers? Have you identified local or statewide agencies who are able to do case management?
LTRO Accomplishments Organized, Cooperative, Coordinated Disaster Recovery Executive Committee Established Fiscal Agent Established Case Management of Individuals Reporting Loss Repair and Construction Estimates were Completed Volunteer Mission Teams were Scheduled (challenge) Housing for Mission Teams Identified (challenge) Mapping and Data Base of Damaged Homes Created
LTRO Accomplishments Cont. Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida received $10K grant for disaster recovery in Washington and Bay Counties. $5K was dedicated to repair and rebuild homes. UMC of Alabama/West Florida matched the $5K United Church of Christ also matched the $5K United Way of Northwest Fla. also matched the $5K Washington Co. LTRO with the help of Volunteer Mission Teams’ extra funding, repaired or rebuilt 42 homes to date.
LTRO time factor History of disasters shows; most LTRO’s take up to a year to actually organize, put systems and procedures in place before a single home repair is done. Washington and Walton Counties were able to identify local resources (human and financial) who were interested more in helping people than their own agenda. How long would it take to stand up a LTRO in your community? Are mechanisms in place at this time?
Working backwards LTRO established before COAD in response to the disaster. Speedy establishment of the LTRO became a necessity to help the community. How many LTROs are still operating? How many COADs/Local Coalitions are currently active? Who is the fiscal agent or potential fiscal agent?
The LTROs have provided EMs new resources for future disaster response and recovery Identified non-profits and faith based organizations who are reliable and able to respond to community needs. A resource list of state and national relief and recovery organizations for EMs to use after future disasters Need for credentialing of ESF 15, 17, 18 Develop a response strategy to engage non-profits and faith-based organizations
Other benefits of the LTRO Identified churches who are willing to house volunteers Identified other resources to house and feed volunteers Identified future partners Created new relationships in the private and non-profit sectors
Keeping the LTRO alive by creating a COAD Include non-profit and faith-based organizations in exercises Engage and encourage Civic Clubs, businesses, churches etc. to join the COAD Schedule Regular meetings
Thank you Washington Co EM, Lynne Abel 850-638-6203 email@example.com City of Vernon, Michelle Cook 850-866-7210 firstname.lastname@example.org Walton Co. EM, Russell Beaty 850-892-8065 email@example.com Florida Catholic Conf., Gabe Tischler 850-443-2996 firstname.lastname@example.org