ORLANDO, Fla. – A Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) opens Wednesday, November 15, for four days in Arcadia to help Florida storm survivors.
Disaster Recovery Centers offer in-person support to individuals and small business owners. Recovery specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the State of Florida are available to provide assistance to anyone filling out their applications or updating their status. Voluntary organizations are available and offer a variety of services to help survivors recover. The State of Florida does not offer Food For Florida (Disaster SNAP/D-SNAP) at DRCs. A list of Food for Florida sites is available online.
The DRC is at the following address:
Arcadia (DeSoto County)
DeSoto County Library
125 N. Hillsborough Ave.
Arcadia, FL 34266
Hours: Wednesday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
HIS LOCATION CLOSES SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 18, AT 7 P.M.
Survivors may locate open DRCs near them at https://www.fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362, (TTY) 800-462-7585. Helpline numbers are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week. DRC information is also available on the FEMA App.
The registration process is the first step in your recovery and requires information such as insurance policies and bank information for possible direct transfer of funds. Survivors are encouraged to register before visiting a DRC.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest federal disaster loans for homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes. The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged property.
If you have phone and/or internet access, you may register in one of the following ways:
- Online at DisasterAssistance.gov.
- Call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 for voice, 711 and Video Relay Service (VRS). If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability and use a TTY, call 800-462-7585. Information on the registration process is available in ASL at: fema.gov/medialibrary/assets/videos/111546.
- Help is available in most languages.
- Download the FEMA App and apply.
You may have other needs while visiting a DRC:
- If you have a disability and require a reasonable accommodation, please see a DRC manager when you arrive.
- Language translations are offered through Telephonic Interpretation Services in 200 languages.
Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) crews are canvassing affected areas and are able to register survivors for FEMA assistance, if needed. Telephonic Interpretation Services are available in many languages to assist survivors with language needs. When residents require further assistance, the teams may refer them to a DRC.
If you have already registered, it is not necessary to visit a DRC, but you may still want to go speak with a Recovery Specialist to update your status or find help from the other organizations.
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.
Survivors should register even if they have insurance. FEMA cannot duplicate insurance payments, but underinsured applicants may receive help after their claims have been settled.
For more information on Hurricane Irma and Florida recovery, visit www.FEMA.gov/IrmaFL, @FEMARegion4 Twitter account, or the Florida Division of Emergency Management website.
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). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
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 to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.