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AmeriCorps Teams Help Cleanup, Serve Communities in New Jersey

Dedicated AmeriCorps, state and volunteer teams lend a hand to help New Jersey survivors of Hurricane Ida muck and gut their homes.  Muck and gut includes removing flood damaged home interiors so the rebuilding process can begin. FEMA/Sue Carlson
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As New Jersey continues to recover from heavy rain and flooding caused by remnants of Hurricane Ida, AmeriCorps teams have mobilized to deliver direct assistance to survivors by removing debris and mucking out homes. 

More than 80 AmeriCorps members and staff have arrived in the Garden State, working in partnership with state emergency personnel, FEMA, and voluntary agency partners, to lend a hand and provide vital relief to disaster survivors as part of their mission to serve the nation.

“AmeriCorps plays an instrumental role in disaster response,” said Voluntary Agency Liaison Group Supervisor, Lori Ross. “The work these teams do help communities rebuild and recover and allow survivors to recapture a sense of normalcy.”

In New Jersey, teams are assigned to carry out muck-and-gut missions in five counties. Muck-and-gut includes removing flood-damaged drywall, insulation, and appliances, along with removing waterlogged furnishings that can pose health and safety hazards. The first wave of AmeriCorps teams has mucked and gutted 30 homes and removed more than 806.5 total cubic yards of household debris to date.

State partners identified impacted communities with vulnerable populations—such as the elderly, disabled, and those who cannot do this labor-intensive work on their own—where the teams will focus their mission. Additionally, AmeriCorps Command Team members continue reaching out to homeowners who registered for Crisis Cleanup and expect to find more residents in need via word of mouth.

Each AmeriCorps Disaster Response Team (A-DRT) is deployed for approximately 30 days to conduct this labor-intensive work and is committed to completing as many homes as possible in that 30-day timeframe. A-DRT teams are especially trained in disaster and come from across the nation.

AmeriCorps teams are also deployed through a partnership between FEMA and AmeriCorps known as FEMA Corps, a team-based service program that gives 18- to 26-year-old participants the opportunity to serve communities impacted by disaster while gaining professional development experience.

Interested in getting involved? Visit the FEMA Corps program page to learn more and visit the AmeriCorps website to apply.

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Last updated November 2, 2021