Over the past month and a half, the Central U.S. has experienced a host of disasters – from the historic flooding along the Mississippi River to deadly tornadoes and severe storms that claimed hundreds of lives.
I wanted to take a minute to provide an update on the ongoing recovery efforts in the Volunteer State and make sure that survivors have the information they need to register with FEMA for disaster assistance.
I’m proud to say that since President Obama made federal disaster assistance available on May 1, Tennessee has been approved for more than $9 million in federal aid. These funds have been approved for individuals to help with temporary housing, cover essential disaster-related needs or to provide low-interest loans to eligible homeowners, renters or business owners.
Through a team of federal, state, voluntary, faith- and community-based groups, we continue to get the word out that disaster assistance is available to those affected by the storms. To date, nearly 5,700 individuals have visited joint FEMA/Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) Disaster Recovery Centers in affected counties.
Memphis, TN, May 24, 2011 -- FEMA Applicant Assistant Andres Lugo answers questions for an applicant at the Hope Shelter DRC. Disaster Recovery Centers are set up at the Shelby County Shelters so that applicants have easy access to FEMA. Marilee Caliendo/FEMA
Representatives from FEMA, the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and other agencies staff these centers to explain disaster assistance programs and help survivors apply for assistance. Check out this video as a disaster survivor goes through the various stations at a Disaster Recovery Center – even though it’s from North Carolina, the scene is very similar in Tennessee, too:
Call 800-621-FEMA (3362), individuals with a speech or hearing impairment may call (TTY) 800-462-7585
- Go online to www.DisasterAssistance.gov
- Visit m.fema.gov on your smartphone
- Visit a Disaster Recovery Center