The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region III continues to be on the ground supporting state and local officials, communities, and individuals in their recovery from the June 2016 severe flooding that struck West Virginia.
On June 23, West Virginia Recovery Office (WVRO) employees and their West Virginia Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (WV DHSEM) colleagues will pause from their work to remember those whose lives were lost and the communities that were devastated.
“We’re also marking the anniversary of the federal disaster declaration to remember those who died and to renew our commitment to the people of West Virginia,” said WVRO Director Steve Ward. “We’ll continue, working with our State and local partners, to help flood survivors recover from the disaster and help their communities rebuild stronger, safer and more resilient.”
The WVRO’s mission is to support flood survivors, their families, neighbors and the state of West Virginia in the 18 counties included in the federal disaster declaration for West Virginia.
“A key part of our work has been to support the state and local communities as they identify grant projects to repair, restore or replace flood-damaged facilities that best support their communities’ needs,” Ward said.
Since the declaration, 4,950 West Virginians received $42 million for individual and households. Of that total, $35.5 million was provided for housing assistance and $6.6 million was provided for other expenses such as furnishings, transportation and medical.
Communities have received more than $106 million to rebuild their infrastructure and for emergency work projects.
Additionally, the Disaster Case Management Program provided more than $5 million to survivors and their families by connecting them with state, community and nongovernmental organizations which help servers create recovery plans tailored to their individual needs.
West Virginians also received more than $213,160 under Disaster Unemployment Assistance program. The program provided temporary unemployment benefits to survivors whose employment or self-employment was lost or interrupted because of the disaster.
“Some of our WVRO staff are Mountaineers working to help their fellow West Virginians,” Ward said. “Some of us volunteered from other states to deploy here, away from our families and communities, because we wanted to make a positive difference here.
“It’s a service we embrace and a responsibility we honor with dignity, dedication and humility.”