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One month later: Disaster assistance efforts in Tennessee continue

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) today announced updated information on the continued efforts of federal and state support in the Volunteer State following the severe storms and flooding between April 30th and May 18th.

As of today, 30 days after President Obama made a federal disaster declaration for Tennessee, 1,039 federal and state employees from across the country are working to meet the needs of more than 60,000 disaster survivors who have registered for assistance.

“FEMA is only one part of the team in Tennessee,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Gracia Szczech. “The coordinated efforts between federal, state, local, non-profit, faith-based and private sector organizations have provided a broad network to get the needed information and assistance to individuals and families quickly.”

More than 20,000 volunteers have been helping with response and recovery efforts.  Volunteers have included players, coaches and staff from the NFL Tennessee Titans, who helped with cleanup efforts in Nashville, TN.  The team also recorded public service announcements with FEMA to promote community preparedness and encourage survivors to apply for assistance at 1-800-621-FEMA.

Private sector groups such as Gaylord Entertainment are also helping to share disaster recovery information through their web sites, as are music industry representatives including the Nashville Songwriters Association International and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).

Additionally, FEMA and TEMA are hosting an online community through Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TNDisasterInfo.  This online hub allows those affected by the disaster and those active in the response to share information.  FEMA and TEMA, as well as their federal, state, and local and voluntary agency partners are posting recovery tips and updates, including details on how to access disaster assistance.  FEMA and TEMA will continue to upload videos and photos from the affected area.

As recovery efforts continue, the following summary outlines the progress that has been made over the first 30 days:

  • Nearly $130 million in federal assistance approved – $113.3 million in housing assistance, which includes rental and home repair assistance, and $16.4 million for other needs such as property lost due to the disaster.
  • 60,240 people registered with FEMA for Individual Assistance.
  • $41.5 million in loans approved by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
  • 15,311 homes and businesses were visited by FEMA Community Relations Specialists who distributed more than 12,000 flyers in several languages, including Arabic, Vietnamese and Farsi.
  • 20,000 volunteers put in more than 160,000 volunteer hours working with more than
  • 40 community and faith-based organizations, including members of the Tennessee Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, as well as other agencies from outside Tennessee, with assistance from FEMA’s Voluntary Agencies Liaison office.
  • 331,000 employees and customers in business organizations and companies received disaster recovery information through networks developed by FEMA’s Private Sector division.
  • 9,318 people received 4,558 publications from FEMA Mitigation specialists with rebuilding information to prevent and lessen damage in future disasters.
  • 31 Disaster Recovery Centers are located in Middle and Western Tennessee, down from a total high of 64 centers.

 The last day to register with FEMA for disaster assistance is July 6th.

 To watch, the Tennessee Titan PSA, visit www.fema.gov/medialibrary/media_records/2530 and www.fema.gov/medialibrary/media_records/2527.

Follow the recovery in Tennessee online at http://twitter.com/tema, www.twitter.com/femainfocus, http://www.facebook.com/TNDisasterInfo, www.youtube.com/fema and http://www.flickr.com/photos/t_e_m_a.

The social media links provided are for reference only. FEMA and TEMA do not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications.

About FEMA

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status.  If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.


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