Hurricane Irma | Florida Disaster Response Daily Update

September 21, 2017
David Jolley | david.jolley@usn.salvationarmy.org

Hurricane Irma | Florida Disaster Response Daily Update

Tampa,  Florida (September 22, 2017) - In what is the largest response in the history of the Florida Division, The Salvation Army continues to respond in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. All Salvation Army units in Florida are actively involved in the statewide relief effort that includes the support of trained disaster workers and volunteers from around the United States and Canada.

The Salvation Army of Florida has 61 canteens (mobile feeding units) and 3 field kitchens that are serving in locations throughout the state of Florida. Other support vehicles including sleeping units, refrigerated vehicles, and generators have been dispatched to some of the hardest hit areas in southwest Florida.

 

NAPLES

Sixteen mobile feeding kitchens from Florida, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Mississippi, as well as a field kitchen from Florida, are providing food, hydration, and emotional and spiritual care service to individuals impacted by Hurricane Irma.  As of the end of the day on September 20th, almost 40,000 hot meals had been served to the community   The planning team continues to scout out new sites.  Approximately 2% of Collier County is still without electricity, which represents 4,760 individuals. This does not represent the individuals who have power restored to their area but, due to the storm damage to their homes, their power cannot be restored. The Emotional and Spiritual team continues to provide comfort throughout the community, as well as at federal assistance sign-ups sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio’s office.

 

SEBRING

The Salvation Army in Highlands County has begun transitioning to long-term recovery. Partnerships in the community will help The Salvation Army provide food boxes, supplies, and monetary support to those in need. The area United Way has committed funds to The Salvation Army in Highlands County in order to help with rent, power, and mortgage payments for those impacted by the storm.

 

FORT MYERS

A field kitchen arrived a couple of days ago from Alabama/Mississippi and up and running. Although it is capable of cooking 10,000 meals a day, the need for prepared meals is decreasing. Most residents have had power restored. “There are fewer pockets who need immediate emergency assistance, and that’s encouraging,” said Major Marshall Gesner. 1,300 lunches will be delivered today to locations in Bonita Springs, Lehigh Acres, Labelle, and Fort Myers. To date, more than 33,000 meals have been served in the Fort Myers area alone. The transition to long-term recovery efforts continues, and The Salvation Army will continue to serve those impacted by Hurricane Irma.

 

FLORIDA KEYS

With residents allowed to return to the Florida Keys, The Salvation Army continues to work with county officials to meet needs of first responders and residents as the community begins to asses and rebuild. Long-term relief efforts are being coordinated by the local Salvation Army corps in Key West, and they are assessing the needs of the community in order to meet those needs in the near future.

 

MIAMI

Salvation Army response in Miami-Dade County has transitioned to the area command under the direction of the area commanders. The Salvation Army will continue to provide services to the Miami area through food boxes and cleanup kits, partnerships with the school district, and various community and family programs. The Miami Adult Rehabilitation Center has provided the Area Command with clothing vouchers to provide to individuals and families in need to help them get back to a sense of normalcy.

 

NORTHEAST FLORIDA

Services are in transition in northeast Florida as power is restored and businesses are reopening. The Salvation Army is providing mass feeding, snacks, and water to folks who are still struggling to get back on their feet. Emotional and spiritual care workers are vital, connecting disaster survivors to local networks and resources. Local Salvation Army units are preparing to serve the needs of the community and support for households as they return to life after Hurricane Irma.

 

As of Friday morning, September 22, The Salvation Army Florida Division has prepared and distributed 723,393 meals and snacks, and have made 8,125 emotional and spiritual care contacts with the support of 41,855 service hours from officers, employees, and volunteers.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to www.SalvationArmyUSA.org or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.

Our Mission

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
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