Thursday, October 20, 2016

Getting Help: FEMA and Disaster Assistance

The hardest part of any disaster is the recovery. The process of rebuilding—lives and homes—requires time, patience and money.  Those who have insurance may receive settlements that help with rebuilding and cleaning, but sometimes that insurance does not cover all the needs, and this is particularly true in flood situations. 

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is one of our primary disaster partners. 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. 
One of the main tools FEMA has to leverage is the Disaster Assistance Improvement Program (DAIP) that helps streamline access and information for getting assistance after a disaster. The website,, is an easy portal for those affected by disaster to determine their eligibility and begin the process for getting that help. 

Many of the areas affected by Hurricane Matthew and the resulting floods are eligible for federal assistance. The amount is determined on a case by case basis. Those applying for aid should first contact their insurance company and document the damage with photographs.  
Contact the FEMA Helpline if you have questions about: 
  • The help offered by FEMA. 
  • How to apply for assistance. 
  • Information in your account. 
Call 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET, 7 days a week: 
  • 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362) 
  • TTY 1-800-462-7585 
  • 711 or VRS 1-800-621-3362 

You can also send an email from the Disaster Assistance webform accessible on Or write to: 
      FEMA       P.O. Box 10055       Hyattsville, MD 20782-8055 

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