By Austin Moorhouse
Special to the Caloosa Belle
FEMA, with the assistance of Glades County Emergency Operations Center and the Hendry County Emergency Operations Center are joining forces to establish a community-based long-term recovery program for our two counties. Long-term recovery is the period following a disaster (in this case Hurricane Irma) when the affected community and its residents return to a new normal state of living. A Long-term Recovery Group is usually established by the community, often with outside assistance, in order to help its most vulnerable residents through the recovery process. This group continues to coordinate services after FEMA is no longer able to provide continued disaster relief services.
Many other counties in the State of Florida are either in the process of establishing these community-based voluntary organizations for disaster recovery or they already have a community-based long-term recovery programs. The Glades /Hendry County Disaster Recovery Group needs volunteers from our communities to help case managers coordinate the necessary services for those families with unmet needs.
The mission of the Glades/Hendry Long-term Recovery Group is to support households and businesses impacted by disaster to recover and rebuild. The aim of this group is to strengthen and streamline disaster coordination by sharing information, facilitating dispersal of funds, resources and other services in coordination with federal, state and local authorities and agencies.
The recovery group is made up of ordinary citizens who are willing to spend a little of their time and/or talent as well as representatives from faith-based, civic, nonprofit, government, business and other organizations (such as the American Red Cross, Salvation Army and United Way) to assist individuals and families as they recover from a disaster. The sole purpose is to match disaster-caused needs with community resources to help families recover.
For further information and meeting times interested parties may contact Marisa Shivers at the Glades County Emergency Operation Center at 863-946-6020.