PELHAM, Ala. -- Almost four weeks after tornadoes struck Alabama, more than $1.2 million in state and federal aid has been approved to help those affected by the storms.
“The people of Alabama are resilient. We are all focused on recovery and working together to make that happen,” said Art Faulkner, director of the Alabama Emergency Management Agency.
More than 1,200 survivors have contacted the Federal Emergency Management Agency for help or information regarding disaster assistance. Many people are seeking housing assistance from FEMA because their primary homes have been damaged or destroyed.
“It takes the whole community to recover successfully after a disaster – local municipalities, local and state agencies, and especially the people from volunteer and faith-based groups who have made a tremendous impact here in Alabama,” said Joe Girot, FEMA federal coordinating officer. “Federal assistance is just part of the recovery process.”
For survivors who have not needed FEMA disaster assistance or have had additional needs, FEMA has referred them to partner agencies such as the Small Business Administration, American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. FEMA also can refer survivors to groups and agencies who can help them with disaster unemployment assistance, crisis counseling and legal aid.
The SBA can help homeowners, renters and businesses secure low-interest disaster loans.
The following is a snapshot of the disaster recovery effort as of Feb. 16:
- More than $1.2 million in total federal assistance for individuals and families, including:
- Nearly $701,000 in FEMA individual assistance grants; and
- Nearly $560,000 in low-interest SBA disaster loans for renters, homeowners and businesses
- 767 visits to the five disaster recovery centers;
- 538 property inspections have been completed;
- 703 low-interest disaster loan application forms distributed by SBA to survivors.
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.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). If you have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 800-462-7585 directly; if you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362.
FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.