FEMA opens three DRCs

Published 12:05 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2005

By By Adam Prestridge
Making ends meet is sometimes hard.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) understands that in the aftermath of Hurricane Dennis it's even harder.
FEMA has set up three Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in Escambia County to help those in need of assistance.
"'They will find very helpful people there," FEMA public affairs officer and photographer Marvin Nauman said Thursday afternoon. "They will have telephones and fax machines available for use. Some people have lost those items or didn't have access to them before and that's why we're here, to provide them with that. Part of that help is getting that application filled out correctly and to determine what funding and programs that they are eligible for."
Even though the DRCs have been setup throughout the county, Nauman said that FEMA encourages other means of applying.
"We're highly recommending the FEMA website for filling out, but we know that some people don't have Internet access," Nauman said.
FEMA employees will assist residents at the DRCs fill out their application for funding. Nauman said anyone, no matter if they had major damage such as the roof to their home or minor such as losing the food in refrigerator and freezer, should apply for assistance.
"The bottom line is if you been affected in any way by the disaster, you should register," he said. "Part of that application process or when they are speaking with the inspector these things will be brought up at that point. Then the inspector will make the determination. We encourage people to not disqualify themselves by not applying, but to apply and let the inspector make the determination whether they are eligible."
FEMA was created to assist the state in helping victims recover from a disaster at the governor's request. When the needs exceed the state's resources, then the governor declares a declaration to the president asking for federal assistance.
"Every case is different," Nauman said. "You can have two people that live side by side with the same amount damage and their cases will be different. There are a lot of determining factors."
Those seeking assistance are more likely to receive it if they have documentations such as receipts and photographs in hand when they apply.
"One of our goals is to try to get applicants every dollar they are legally entitled to," Nauman said.
Assistance for affected individuals and families can include:
As of 5 p.m. Thursday afternoon, FEMA had received 4,378 applications for assistance in Escambia, Baldwin and Mobile counties.
The DRCs in Escambia County, Alabama and Escambia County, Fla. include:
The DRCs are open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m., seven days a week until further notice.

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