February 3, 2014

Postponed to March 4: CWS Floods Recovery Workshop in Utica, N.Y.

The Mohawk Valley floods “Recovery Tools and Training” workshop scheduled for February 5 in Utica, N.Y., has been postponed until March 4.

Organizers cited predictions of heavy snow for central New York on Wednesday, threatening to make travel dangerous for workshop participants.  In all, 95 people coming mostly from Herkimer, Oneida, Madison and Montgomery counties had pre-registered for the Church World Service workshop.

Snow, freezing rain, ice and sleet also are impeding workshop leaders from traveling to Utica, including three from New Jersey, two from southern Ohio and two from Virginia.

The free workshop is for community members involved in long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts to help survivors of last summer’s devastating Mohawk Valley flooding and other disasters. It will now be held from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. March 4.  Venue: Our Saviour Lutheran Church, 1640 Genesee Street, Utica.

Persons wanting to attend the March 4 workshop should provide their name, organization and full contact information to Patsy Glista by email: pglista@upstatenysynod.org, phone: 315-235-7106, or mail: c/o LDR, LutheranCare, 108 Utica Road, Clinton, NY 13323. For more information please call 315-289-2686.


Church World Service will hold its next “Recovery Tools and Training” workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. February 5 in Utica, N.Y., for community members helping survivors of last summer’s devastating Mohawk Valley flooding and other disasters.

The free workshop will be held at Our Saviour Lutheran Church, 1640 Genesee Street, Utica, and will focus on long-term recovery needs in Herkimer, Oneida, Madison and Montgomery counties in Central New York.  These counties were declared disaster areas by the state, although not by the federal government. 

Hundreds of households in the four counties received state assistance, said Les Radford of Rome, N.Y., chair of the Herkimer-Oneida Organizations Active in Disaster Long-Term Recovery Group, one of three long-term recovery groups at work in the four counties.

That group, along with the Fulton-Montgomery Long-Term Recovery Group and the Oneida City-Madison County Long-Term Recovery Group, together currently count about 170 flood-affected households in need of their assistance – a number that could grow with additional needs assessment. 

In addition, the Fulton-Montgomery Long-Term Recovery Group still has 15 open cases from tropical storms Irene and Lee, said Pat Moore of Amsterdam, N.Y., that LTRG’s secretary and case management coordinator.  And high winds from Superstorm Sandy caused sporadic structural damage throughout Herkimer County.

The CWS workshop is for all community members involved in long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts – everyone from local emergency managers to local government and non-profit agency program staff to pastors and congregational lay leaders and local business leaders. 

The workshop agenda includes an overview of long-term recovery, the FEMA Sequence of Assistance, community needs assessment, disaster case management, emotional and spiritual care, volunteer hospitality, health and safety guidelines and mold remediation, and construction and volunteer management.

CWS trainers will be joined by presenters from Lutheran Disaster Response, Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, United Methodist Committee on Relief, World Renew, and the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.

The CWS workshop will provide valuable insight into “the problems and hurdles we’ll run into and where we need to be before we begin to bring rebuilding teams into our area,” said Dave Woodcock of Durhamville, N.Y., who chairs the Oneida City-Madison County Long-Term Recovery Group. 

Woodcock also serves as Disaster Response Coordinator and Flood Relief Director for the Upper New York Conference of the United Methodist Church, and as the United Methodist Committee on Relief’s representative for the summer 2013 Mohawk Valley flood response.

He said he appreciated the CWS-UMCOR collaboration to “aim a whole multitude of resources at the Mohawk Valley, whose long-term recovery needs probably aren’t going to get a lot of attention nationwide.  With so many disasters around, getting everyone to work together toward one goal is extremely important.”

Note: If you want to attend the February 5 workshop, please provide your name, organization and full contact information to Patsy Glista, phone: 315-235-7106, or mail: c/o LDR, LutheranCare, 108 Utica Road, Clinton, NY 13323. RSVPs by January 31 will be much appreciated.  For more information please call 315-289-2686.