September 24, 2013

CWS Disaster Recovery Workshops to be Held in Illinois and Connecticut

Day-long workshops on long-term recovery from disaster will be held October 1 in Chicago, October 2 in Lisle and October 4 in Peoria, Ill.  The focus will be on meeting unmet needs of survivors of storms and flooding in April and May whose impact was so severe that 49 Illinois counties received federal disaster declarations.

The CWS “Recovery Tools and Training” workshop also will be offered October 8 in Milford and October 10 in Bridgeport, Conn.  The focus will be on meeting unmet needs of survivors of Superstorm Sandy.  FEMA Voluntary Agency Liaison John Stewart estimates “conservatively” that 400 to 600 Connecticut households still need long-term recovery help.

The free “Recovery Tools and Training” workshops are for faith-based groups, religious leaders, community leaders, social service organizations, disaster case managers and others with funds, goods, labor and expertise to contribute to the flood recovery.

Participants will gain an understanding of the long-term recovery process and of how to coordinate its many components.  These include identifying disaster survivors most in need, disaster case management, construction management, fundraising, construction management, emotional and spiritual care, and management of financial, in-kind and volunteer resources.

Each workshop will be from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., with check in from 8:30 to 9 a.m.  For more information and/or to register for either training, here are the contacts:

In Illinois: Jocelyn Perry, jocelyn.perry@redcross.org or 312-285-1940.

In Connecticut:  Beverly Hoffberg (Beverly.Hoffberg@fema.dhs.gov, 860-856-3874) or Elizabeth Rosario (Elizabeth.Rosario@fema.dhs.gov, 617-832-4748).

“Recovery Tools and Training” is a program of the humanitarian agency Church World Service, and has been used across the country to assist local communities in their long-term recovery efforts.  CWS is bringing the program to Illinois by invitation of the COAD (Community Organizations Active in Disaster) of Northeast Illinois and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) regional office.  The American Red Cross is funding the three workshops.  CWS is bringing the program to Connecticut by invitation of Connecticut Rises, a statewide long-term recovery group, also with funding from the American Red Cross.

Church World Service, an ecumenical agency with 37 Protestant, Orthodox and Anglican member communions, is a close working partner in the United States with the American Red Cross, National VOAD and FEMA in helping people put their lives back together after a disaster.  The agency also is known for its work to combat hunger and poverty, including the CROP Hunger Walk, its U.S. refugee resettlement work, and its international humanitarian assistance program.