United Way: Wednesday, May 7 p.m. update

WEBSITE Live to Accept Donations to help NWFL Recover

As you may know we have established a disaster fund that will be utilized to help citizens across Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa and Walton Counties. The fund will be divided using the level of impact determined by FEMA’s assessment of loss/impact. The funds will be disbursed to the local communities by the United Way that covers those geographic regions. Please help us gather funds and support that can be responsibly distributed to meet the immediate and long-term needs in our community. If you will direct donors to the website, they can make a secure donation online at www.helpNWFLrecover.org. There have been questions about whether we United Way of Escambia will take a share of the fund for administration of the fund. Please know that the United Way of Escambia Board of Directors have directed that United Way will only recover the actual costs incurred in processing donations for the recent flooding (credit card fees, bank charges, etc).

WSRE would like agency partners to help share the information in the attached press release about a special live broadcast of “Connecting the Community” this Thursday, which will address the effects of recent flooding in the area. They have asked all media to help get the word out for citizens to submit questions to be answered during the program (please note: the recording itself will not be open to the public). We appreciate your help in spreading the word about this important program to help our community! This special episode of “Connecting the Community,” moderated by Jeff Weeks, will provide citizens the opportunity to get information about the current flooding situation, where to find help and resources, transportation issues and what the next steps are for recovery.

Volunteer Florida Wants All Agencies Coordinating volunteer hours to know:
Merrilee White, Director of Emergency management and Volunteer Services with Volunteer Florida wants all to know that the volunteer hours eligible to be applied to local match are described in the documents attached. One clarification that seems to be needed is that removal of debris from private property is generally NOT eligible work, because it is not the responsibility of the county. However, sorting of the debris at curbside for purposes of recycling / debris reduction would be eligible work because, once it’s on the street, it is the county’s responsibility to remove it. Remember – the hours volunteers serve doing eligible work may be applied to the local match under the Public Assistance program – not the Individual Assistance program. As of last night, we have an IA declaration only. If your counties ultimately receive a PA declaration, hours served by volunteers doing eligible work from day one of your response may be counted. That’s why it’s so important to begin documenting the hours with sign-in sheets immediately.

Calls to 2-1-1 From Flood Victims (as of 5pm Today- call details attached for Escambia County only):

As of 5 pm, May 7th

Escambia County Flood Calls:            Santa Rosa:                Okaloosa:
32501: 88                                                          32530: 1                           32531: 5
32502: 11                                                          32561: 24                            32536: 1
32503: 95                                                         32563: 21                           32539: 5
32504: 27                                                         32566: 3                             32541: 7
32505: 187                                                        32570: 4                           32547: 19
32506: 187                                                        32571: 21                          32548: 11
32507: 84                                                         32583: 4                            32567: 1
32508: 2                                                           32569: 3
32514: 35                                                          32578: 1
32526: 71
32533: 28
32534: 67
32577: 1

Santa Rosa only increased by 1 call, Okaloosa only by 2. ***Instead of sending a comprehensive list of ALL the flood calls from Escambia County, attached are the calls since noon today.

Food Calls, only increase has been seen in Escambia County. Up to 158 (From 144 at noon).

MANNA Update from Dede Flounlacker, Executive Director as of 8pm
· Manna estimates that it will take 8 – 12 weeks before they can resume client service.
· An on-site command center has been set up at Manna’s current location on E. Gonzalez Street for staff and volunteers.
· The staff and board of directors are committed to seeking new space that is better suited to the meet the long-term needs of Manna and those we serve.
· Temporary space to warehouse all donations from the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive has been secured.
· Outreach Manager, JoAnn Howansky reports: Attached please find the Stamp Out Hunger press release that went out today. Please follow United Way of Escambia County and Manna Food Pantries on Facebook and Twitter. We will be posting a couple of times a day to promote the drive from now until Saturday. Feel free to borrow language from the press release or share our posts when doing your own promotion. Philip Skipper & Glenn Corbett will be appearing on Dayside with Sue Straughn on WEAR ABC Channel 3 tomorrow at 11:00 am to promote the drive. We are extremely grateful to both of them for all that they do for us and to Rachael & Naomi at United Way of Escambia County for all of their support with publicity. We are also thankful to Aaron Waslavek at the local office of the Florida AFL-CIO for his support, including getting Publix on board with drop off sites.