Volunteer Reception Center Opens to Assist in Harvey Recovery Effective Volunteer Coordination Crucial for Rebuilding Success
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Houston, TX) – Points of Light, with support of its local affiliate Volunteer Houston, is standing up a disaster recovery team and opening a Volunteer Reception Center (VRC) at Harris County Precinct One’s Finnigan Park Community Center, 4900 Providence Street, Houston, Texas 77020, where it is currently signing up volunteers to help with the Hurricane Harvey recovery. The VRC provides a central location for the public to learn about and sign up for volunteer opportunities throughout the area.
“It is all about neighbor helping neighbor,” said Harris County Judge Ed Emmett. “Volunteers immediately came together during the search and rescue efforts and now they are stepping up to help rebuild their communities.”
Harris County, the City of Houston and Points of Light’s Houston disaster recovery team are working together to help coordinate volunteer opportunities that will speed up recovery efforts in the area. Volunteers are integral in every disaster and are core to a community’s recovery. Volunteer management and training is fundamental to community rebuilding efforts and resilience. Points of Light’s team will coordinate, train and deploy volunteers into roles that meet critical community need.
Points of Light has a more direct connection with the Houston community because it is home to the organization’s founder, President George H. W. Bush, and his family.
“A half mile from my home an entire neighborhood, like so many communities near a bayou, was flooded. But just down the street we found inspiration. A neighborhood darkened by flood damage was shining with the bright light of neighbors helping neighbors,” said Neil Bush, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Points of Light. “Times of disaster are devastating but they also remind us of the spirit of compassion that binds the fabric of our nation together. I’m proud that Points of Light and Volunteer Houston are able to harness this spirit of compassion for direct impact in our community.”
Community recovery is dependent on the strength of the voluntary sector to identify and meet acute needs of survivors who face loss of a home or possibly the loss of their livelihoods, and volunteers will take on the majority of tasks required to help communities get back on their feet in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.
“Our community’s resilience is directly impacted by the work that volunteers are doing in our communities,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. “This center will provide a central location for ensuring their skills, talents, and time are effectively used.”
At the VRC, volunteers will:
- Participate in a safety briefing
- Receive volunteer assignments for the day
- Help make a difference in the lives of Houstonians
Volunteers can also go to http://www.volunteerhou.org/drm/needs/ to register and sign up!
For more information visit the Regional Joint Information Center website at www.readyharris.org
TD 16 becomes a tropical storm over the SW Caribbean Sea
Tropical storm or hurricane increasingly likely into Louisiana this weekend.
While the system has only become slightly better organized overnight, it has gained enough organization to be upgraded to a tropical storm. Satellite images this morning show a rather disorganized system with some banding, but a difficult to locate center compared to yesterday. The low level center is likely on the western edge of the limited deep convection and not far off the coast of Nicaragua.
As mentioned yesterday evening there was significant track differences between the GFS and ECMWF much of which was hinging on the amount of high pressure that would build east of FL this weekend. Overnight the ECMWF has come into much better agreement with the GFS of much more significant ridging off the FL east coast. There is now much better agreement with the GFS, ECWMF, CMC, and UKMET all showing a NW to NNW track through the NW Caribbean Sea, the central Gulf of Mexico and toward the Louisiana coast. As the ridge off the FL east coast intensifies this weekend, Nate will begin to accelerate rapidly toward the NNW. Nate will enter the Gulf early Saturday morning and rapidly move NNW toward the Louisiana coast making landfall in just over 24 hours (Sunday AM) after entering the Gulf. Once Nate arrives in the Gulf of Mexico Saturday morning, there will be little time for preparation.
American Red Cross Hosts Kingwood Resource Event
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 6, 2017
Contact: Jessica Beemer (832) 393-3008
Houston, TX - Houston City Council Member Dave Martin would like to invite Kingwood and Lake Houston residents to visit the American Red Cross on Monday, October 9 or Tuesday, October 10 anytime between 3:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. at the Kingwood Community Center, located at 4102 Rustic Woods, Kingwood, TX 77345. The purpose of the resource event is to assist those affected by Hurricane Harvey with registering for financial assistance through the American Red Cross.
The American Red Cross' Immediate Assistance Program, through donations, seeks to provide emergency assistance in the amount of $400 to qualified households that were directly affected by Hurricane Harvey. Registration for this program is open through Tuesday, October 10 and can be completed by following this link.
Additionally, American Red Cross representatives will be onsite to assist with those in the Kingwood and Lake Houston area that may have been denied financial assistance due to error. The representatives will also be able help connect residents with the resources they may need to further recovery efforts from the devastation created by Hurricane Harvey. If you would like to register for Red Cross Financial Assistance before attending Monday and Tuesday's event please visit: https://harveyhelp.redcross.org/index.html.
Tropical system is organizing in the SW Caribbean Sea…expected to move into the Gulf of Mexico and threaten the US Gulf coast.
An area of low pressure has formed in the extreme SW Caribbean Sea today and recent satellite images suggest that a tropical cyclone is gradually forming with a large curved band of convection having developed. There is no well defined center at this time, but instead a large broad area of circulation. Overall the system is organizing as it moves toward the NNW. The NHC currently gives the system a 70% chance of formation over the next 5 days.
Public Invited to Harvey Recovery Fair
WHO: Residents affected by Hurricane Harvey
WHAT: Hurricane Harvey Recovery Fair
WHEN: Saturday, October 7, 2017, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
WHERE: North East Community Center (at James Driver Park), 10918 ½ Bentley, Houston, TX 77093
(Houston, Texas) – The Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management invites residents affected by Hurricane Harvey to a recovery fair at the Harris County Precinct 2 North East Community Center.
The Harvey Recovery Fair will provide important recovery information about available disaster assistance from both governmental and non-profit organizations. Representatives from Harris County, the City of Houston, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Small Business Administration (SBA) and other volunteer agencies will be available to answer questions and help residents apply for disaster assistance. Free MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat) available for residents attending.
City of Houston Harvey Recovery Update
As Houston homeowners rebuild, it's important to ensure that you have the proper permits to move forward. The Houston Permitting Center is making this easier by opening satellite permitting centers throughout the City and has extended hours at all locations. For a list of locations, and tips making repairs to your homes, visit houstonrecovers.org/repairtips
Unusually High Water Bills Reported as a Result of Harvey Flooding
The City of Houston and Houston Public Works take seriously the fact that some properties affected by flooding have received unusually high water bills. There are approximately 5,000 customer accounts that have water bills that are twice as much (or more) as the previous billing cycle.
The mayor is working with City Council and Houston Public Works to better understand how this happened and how to correct it. For updates, and steps you can take if you have experienced a high water bill related to Harvey, visit houstonrecovers.org/highbills
If you need more rental assistance because you’re still unable to return to your Harvey-damaged home, let FEMA know. FEMA grants do not have to be repaid. FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid or other federal benefits.
To be eligible for continued rental assistance, you must complete a form and mail it to FEMA. If you did not receive the form, visit any Disaster Recovery Center (DRC). For a list and interactive map of DRCs in the Houston area, visit houstonrecovers.org/disaster-recovery-centers.
Report Your Debris
The City's Solid Waste Management Department is working to remove debris as quickly as possible throughout Houston. Be sure the City knows about your damage and debris by submitting a report on houston311.org or on the Houston 311 App for Smartphone. Please note that calling 311 repeatedly will not increase the speed by which your debris is collected. For information on debris management, visit houstonrecovers.org
Harvey by the Numbers
Mayor Sylvester Turner announced the launch of the "Harvey By The Numbers" web site on Friday. The site provides visualized information about Houston's response to Harvey, as well as on storm debris collection. This site will be updated periodically as Houston's recovery from Harvey continues. To access the latest numbers, visit houstonrecovers.org/numbers.
Governor Abbott and Mayor Turner Announce Funding For Houston
On Friday, September 29, Mayor Sylvester Turner and Governor Greg Abbott held a news conference at Houston City Hall to announce that the State of Texas will provide $50 million to the City of Houston to offset the cost associated with Houston's response to Harvey. This additional funding will mean that Houston will not need to raise property taxes slightly to cover the cost of response. Watch the press conference online at twitter.com/houstontx.
Helpful Recovery Links
FEMA - Disaster Assistance
US Small Business Administration
211 Texas - Social Service Directory
Houston Food Bank
Report Debris/Issues to the City
City of Houston Help & Information
3-1-1 or 713.837.0311
FEMA Disaster Assistance
FEMA Individual Case Management Hotline (help navigating available services)
Houston Food Bank Assistance
AlertHouston is a service provided by the City of Houston Office of Emergency Management.
FEMA: Immediate Disaster Case Management Available to Texas Hurricane Survivors
Immediate Disaster Case Management Available to Texas Hurricane Survivors
Survivors can receive free guidance from disaster case managers on how best to recover from Hurricane Harvey and its aftermath, along with ways to access a variety of available resources, including disaster unemployment and disaster legal assistance.
They may simply call the Disaster Case Management Hotline at 855-742-5989 (press 2 for Spanish). A case manager will respond within 24 hours. Other helpful resource telephone numbers for Texas survivors are the Disaster Distress Helpline at 800-985-5990; Disaster Legal Services Texas at 800-504-7030; and Disaster Unemployment Assistance at 800-939-6631.
Disaster case managers connect survivors to available resources, provide assistance with initial disaster registration or appeals, and assist in developing a personalized disaster recovery plan. They assess verified unmet needs; help create goal-oriented plans outlining what steps need to be taken to recover; bring together information and services; and monitor progress to reach goals.
Disaster case managers work in remaining shelters and State of Texas/FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs). For DRC locations, see www.fema.gov/DRC or visit fema.gov/mobile-app to download the FEMA mobile app.
The Immediate Disaster Case Management program, aimed at survivors who have unmet disaster-related needs, is federally funded and administered by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families division.
FEMA: Don't Wait, Clean Up As Soon Soon As Possible
Hurricane Harvey recovery information from the City of Houston
Powered By AlertHouston
The following Information is provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency( FEMA):
If your home was flooded after Hurricane Harvey, you should clean up as soon as possible. Do not wait for a flood insurance adjuster or FEMA home inspector to come to your home.
More than 87,000 flood insurance claims have been filed with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). More than 3,000 insurance adjusters are conducting inspections of those homes. This process takes time. The NFIP advises policyholders to proceed with cleanup once it is safe to re-enter the structure.
- Take photos or videos of the outside and inside of the building, including damaged personal property, and label them by room before you remove anything.
- For items like washers and dryers, hot water heaters, kitchen appliances, TVs and computers, photograph the make, model and serial number.
- For your building items, keep samples of carpet, flooring, wallpaper, drapes, etc.
- For personal property items, separate the damaged from undamaged items for the adjuster’s inspection.
- After taking photos, immediately throw away flooded items that pose a health risk after coming into contact with flood water, such as perishable food, clothing, cushions and pillows.
If you applied to FEMA for disaster assistance, the agency may send an inspector to your home. FEMA has deployed more than 2,000 inspectors to Texas and, because of the large number of damaged homes, it may take up to 30 days for an inspector to contact you to schedule an inspection.
Don’t wait to clean up. Start repairs to make your home safe and livable again.
If you need help cleaning up your flood-damaged home, call 844-965-1386. In support of Texas 2-1-1, the Cleanup Assistance Helpline is helping connect Texas survivors with muck-and-gut cleaning inside homes. This is not for yard cleanup.
Additional information is available online at houstonrecovers.org
AlertHouston is a service provided by the City of Houston Office of Emergency Management. To update your profile, click here: http://houstonoem.us10.list-manage1.com/profile?u=3e16dcdcf201a0869aa6b5645&id=c42f2a5994&e=a83cbe9d81
Harris County Hurricane Harvey Recovery Guide
Helpful Resources and Information
Hurricane Harvey indiscriminately affected Harris County and its residents when it impacted our region with its heavy downpours that caused severe flooding throughout the area. The lives lost and the destruction endured will not be easily forgotten, but the endurance of our communities and the generosity of all who have stepped forward to help has cleared a path to recovery.
The Harris County Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Management (HCOHSEM) is working closely with government and community partners to help expedite the recovery process and get residents the help they need.
HCOHSEM has also compiled detailed information about the types of federal, state and local disaster-assistance services available and where to access them in the Harvey Recovery Guide. The guide includes information on finding housing, food, employment, legal services, and tax relief. It also includes advice on filing insurance claims, applying for disaster relief, replacing lost documents, protecting yourself when hiring contractors, and acquiring crisis counseling or help for managing traumatic stress.
Home Flood Reports to Help Assess Damage in Harris County Communities
Harris County is asking for your photos, videos and information on flood levels inside structures damaged during Hurricane Harvey. Submittals will help assess the damage to communities in Harris County. Your images, videos and information could be useful in that vital effort.
Please fill out the survey as completely as possible. DO NOT use this survey to request direct assistance or disaster relief. (To apply for FEMA Disaster Assistance, please visit: https://www.disasterassistance.gov/.
Submit a home flood report at: http://harveyimages.org.You may submit data from a smart phone, tablet or computer.
Download HCOHSEM's ReadyHarris mobile app. The free app puts the power to build a personalized preparedness plan in the palm of your hand and is available for both Apple and Android devices.