ATLANTA, Ga. -- Community relations specialists from the Alabama Emergency Management Agency and the Federal Emergency Management Agency are in Chilton and Jefferson counties reaching out to survivors affected by the severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding on Jan. 22-23.
Teams are going door-to-door in the impacted communities to share and gather information. Officials want individuals and small business owners to know about available disaster assistance programs, and they are trying to identify unmet needs.
Federal help is available to eligible renters and homeowners in the form of grants for temporary housing, basic home repairs and other serious disaster-related needs. Renters, homeowners and business owners may also be eligible for low-interest disaster loans.
Community relations team members wear FEMA shirts and ID badges. They will also meet with representatives of community-based agencies, community leaders and public officials. When community relations specialists meet a disaster survivor with unmet needs, they pass that information on to state, federal or voluntary agency staff best able to respond.
Disaster survivors can apply for federal assistance directly through Web-enabled devices or smartphones at m.fema.gov. They can also call 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time. Survivors who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY can call 800-462-7585 directly; if they use 711 or Video Relay Service, they can call 800-621-3362. Survivors also can register online anytime at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.