Community Response (CR) is utilized once there is a presidential declaration. After a disaster, survivors require knowledge on how best to begin the recovery process and ways to obtain assistance. CR provides information directly to survivors by canvassing the community door-to-door. CR brings information to locations where citizens frequent, so that everyone in the community has equal access and understanding of the assistance process. The number of CR workers assigned to any given territory will vary depending on such factors as the extent of damage, population density, and other demographics such as special needs populations.
While CR’s primary goal is to inform survivors about the recovery process, CR teams also collect information that can aid the community. CR will often identify unmet needs and areas of concern in the community because they are in the field with the people everyday. This information assists other areas of Recovery to ensure that all of the needs of the community are met.
CR circulates information on how to register with FEMA for disaster aid, the location and operation hours of Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC), and mitigation options. All other information is dependent on the event that has taken place. For example, during a flooding event, CR may hand out information on water damage and mold prevention.
Roles and Responsibilities
The Division of Emergency Management’s Bureau of Recovery is responsible for managing CR operations. The State of Florida works in partnership with FEMA to conduct CR operations in affected communities. A team of state, federal, and, if possible, local members go door-to-door informing citizens of what aid is available. Additional staff may be required to support the CR effort. Depending on the size of the event, staff will be provided by state agencies, Disaster Reservists, and local hires.
Join the CR Team
Individuals interested in joining the CR team can do so by becoming a Florida Disaster Reservist. For more information on the Disaster Reservist program and how to apply see the Disaster Reservist webpage.
February 15, 2010 16:56