We are in Phase II of our hurricane Ida relief that will consist of distribution of 300 (pre-packed) 5-gallon buckets of assorted cleaning supplies a total of 8 pallets from one of our donors. In addition, we will transport and distribute 30 pallets (estimated 700 cases/21,000 lbs.) of food (baby food, veggie straws/chips, and taco kits). All items forecasted to arrive in Jackson, Mississippi by Oct 5th and distributed by October 16th, 2021. Our volunteers and partners will set distribution sites in Hammond, LA, buy request, Slidell LA, by request, Reserve, LA by request and Biloxi, MS by request. 9.25.2021
Unity in Disasters has completed Phase I of our II-Phase relief effort for Hurricane Ida with the purchase of 1,000 rolls of paper towels and I,000 rolls of toilet paper. In addition, we purchased a variety of large storage bins and meal size plastic containers, while absorbing all of the cost associated with this phase.
Disasters are our priority and we act in faith within God’s economy to help those families displaced and effected. Large events like Hurricane Ida are more of a challenge. We have a unique strategy for supporting disasters and normally receive most financial support shortly after a major event providing direct support.
Several hundred families are temporarily homeless and struggling without the basics of food, shelter and security. Faith and prayer are great foundations, but that alone does not provide the essential needs to live with any type of hope or dignity. Federal, state and local agencies along with several churches and outreach agencies can only do their part. Hurricane Ida has created suffering that will require intentional support by many because of the wide spread damage to communities, families and the human spirit.
Our next phase will consist of providing 200-300 cases of food and/or 400 buckets filled with cleaning supplies after a local assessment to determine the exact area needing assistance. A portion of this phase will be through our network of in-kind donations. Financial support for this phase is critical and any amount will help us to support families that have so many unmet needs. After 13 years of providing relief across eight states we have developed insight, acclimated to best practices, and proven to be good stewards of ministry resources.
You can click here to use the Unity pay pal link, or use cash app $JoeUnity for those who want to help us help others. (9/6/21)
All Healers Mental Health Alliance
News & Updates
September 2021 Edition
Join us on Sunday, September 19, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET / 6:00 PM CT / 5:00 PM MT / 4:00 PM PT
Once you register, you will receive a confirmation email with the meeting ID and passcode to log into Zoom.
If you want to join via phone, you still need to register. Once you do, you will see a list of phone numbers to dial by location.
**If you have any trouble accessing the Zoom call through the internet or by phone, please contact Roxana Feenster at firstname.lastname@example.org, or text/call her at 443 314-5188**
The agenda for the September 19th meeting and minutes from the last meeting will be sent after Labor Day with additional updates.
Support Hurricane Ida Relief Efforts!
Unity in Disasters is supporting Hurricane Ida relief efforts in two phases. The first phase is a local drive over the next two weeks in the Tampa, Florida area. A local law firm and restaurant have created a partnership to collect, transport, and distribute donated products. While the overall collaboration goal is to fill at least 3-4 truckloads of donated items, Unity in Disasters will purchase items to fill one of those trucks. The second phase is to support hurricane survivors after we make a 21-day assessment to determine unmet needs and augment feeding operations with NACC or help with donated goods. This will be driven by financial donations to maximize efforts and prevent duplication of efforts, and cover the cost of transportation.
How You Can Help Us Help Others:
Go to www.unityindisasters.org and click on the "Donate Now" button
Send a donation via Cashapp to $JoeUnity
Hammond, LA has a population of 20,019 – over 16 inches of rain
Laplace, LA has a population of 29.1k people -over 18 inches of rain
Jean LaFlee Orleans population of 2,021 – Flooding due to levee breach
New Orleans, LA population 388,244 - Long term power grid outage
Hurricane Ida Relief Updates provided by Faith Communities in Disaster
Situational Awareness and Resources
NOAA 4pm CDT update attached. View key messages here
Key message #2 is especially important: In areas that experienced damage and power loss, individuals should use extreme caution during the recovery phase. Post-storm fatalities and injuries often result from heart attacks and heat exhaustion. They can also result from accidents related to clean up/recovery and carbon monoxide poisoning from improper generator use.
Click here for Power Outage Safety Information
Flooding Reports and Resources
Current flood gauge levels for Louisiana and Mississippi, courtesy of water.weather.gov
Hurricane Ida Forces Mississippi River to Reverse Flow (interesting article from CNN)
678,478 without power
Louisianna Power Outages
Our Damage Assessment (DA) teams will be out this week collecting data on where we should focus efforts. I will share that with you each night as I get the updates. THANK YOU! to our NAACP partners for providing updates on damage across the Region. That information was immediately forwarded to our DA teams as it came in. We couldn’t do this without you!
Mass Care Updates
Red Cross Shelter Map: Shelter locations and population numbers are updated nightly.
Feeding operations are underway and will continue as needed.
Bulk Distribution of emergency supplies will begin tomorrow
. Staying Safe After Hurricane Ida provided by FEMA
Be patient. Recovery will take many months or more. Individuals who experienced damage and power loss should use extreme caution during the recovery phase. If you have insurance, start documenting your damage and reporting your loss immediately to your agent. Areas inland will continue to experience dangerous weather conditions, please be safe and listen to local emergency management officials. Anyone in the forecast path should take caution as Ida continues to cause flooding throughout areas of the Northeast. FEMA’s priorities are to support life-saving and life-sustaining actions. The agency continues working with federal, state, local, tribal and non-governmental partners to support the needs of areas affected by Ida. Visit Hurricane Ida | FEMA.gov for information and resources available for residents in areas that may be affected by Ida. The page is available in French, Haitian Creole, Simplified Chinese, Spanish and Vietnamese.
Federal actions to support areas affected by Hurricane Ida
More than 1,400 FEMA employees are deployed to support Ida response and recovery efforts. There are seven FEMA Incident Management Assistance Teams deployed to support states affected by Hurricane Ida. Five are in Louisiana, and two in Mississippi. Four FEMA Corps teams have deployed to Region 6.
The National Emergency Management Association is helping facilitate additional resources to the area through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact. Resources from 13 states have been sent to assist with ongoing response and recovery effort. Commodities, equipment, and personnel are pre-positioned to assist, as needed. This includes: Twelve Urban Search and Rescue teams that are operational in Louisiana. These teams have completed more than 8,900 structural evaluations. Ambulance crews are deployed to Louisiana and Mississippi. This includes 53 ambulances and four air ambulances staged in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with one additional air ambulance in transit. Today, an additional 158 ambulances are expected to arrive in Louisiana and 140 in Mississippi to support impacted areas. FEMA has staged more than 4.5 million meals, 3.6 million liters of water, more than 134,000 tarps and 191 generators. Fifty-six additional generators are staged at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama. Mobile Emergency Response Support assets, including Emergency Operations Vehicles, are deployed to support Louisiana and Mississippi. The Defense Logistics Agency has been activated for fuel support and leasing of additional generators. High output generators are scheduled for delivery today to Sherwood Forest, Louisiana. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) debris management and roofing experts are conducting assessments in Louisiana. USACE Temporary Emergency Power Planning and Response Teams, contractor support, and the 249th Engineer Battalion’s power generation team are mobilized in Mississippi and Louisiana to conduct power assessments and installations. The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved Louisiana’s request to allow Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households to use their benefits to purchase hot food and are assisting with program flexibility needed for mass feeding operations. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) deployed a 250-bed federal medical shelter to Alexandria, Louisiana. The shelter is scheduled to be operational by Sept. 3. The U.S. Coast Guard has 34 aviation, 26 rotary, and eight fixed-wing search and rescue assets pre-positioned. The National Guard Bureau has 195 high water vehicles and 23 rotary-wing assets pre-positioned to assist with search and rescue in Louisiana, and 680 high water vehicles and five rotary-wing assets in Mississippi. The U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration announced an Emergency Declaration that provides truck drivers flexibility to move critical freight to areas damaged by Ida. Additionally, USDOT activated an Emergency Relief Docket for railroads so they can get temporary safety regulations waivers to help them speed up service to move goods necessary for emergency relief efforts. The Salvation Army mobilized feeding kitchens and emergency response vehicles in Gonzales and New Orleans, Louisiana. These operations can feed up to 30,000 people a day. Forty-eight shelters are open in affected areas throughout the Gulf Coast.
Additional resources for disaster survivors
If you have flood insurance, report your loss immediately to your insurance agent or carrier. Be sure to ask them about advance payments. If you need help finding your insurance agent or carrier, call the National Flood Insurance Program at 877-336-2627. If you are able to safely return to your home, before you discard anything take as many photos and videos as possible of your flood-damaged home and personal property as possible, including flood water lines on the outside of the structure. For appliances and electronics, take a photograph of the make, model, and serial number. Learn more about starting your recovery with the National Flood Insurance Program at FEMA.gov. Residents in Mississippi who have immediate post-disaster needs are encouraged to contact their county EMA director. If they have questions, they can call Mississippi Emergency Management Agency hotline at 1-888-574-3583. Additional resources are available at MEMA (msema.org). Louisiana residents can visit NOLA Ready for assistance information. Anyone in the affected area who needs a safe place to stay should call 211, visit redcross.org, call 1-800-red cross (800-733-2767) or download the free Red Cross emergency app
for shelter locations. You can also text “LASHELTER” to 898-211, text “NOLAREADY” to 77295 or text “IDA” to 67283. FEMA Civil Rights Advisors deployed to Louisiana and Mississippi to assist regional staff. FEMA is reviewing data to ensure that undeserved communities are prioritized in response and recovery efforts. The HHS Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration activated its Disaster Distress helpline. This toll-free, multilingual, crisis support service is available 24/7 via telephone or text at 1-800-985-5990 for disaster survivors in Mississippi and Louisiana experiencing emotional distress.
Spanish-speakers can call or text the hotline and press “2” for bilingual support. Callers can also connect with counselors in over 100 other languages via 3rd-party interpretation services by indicating their preferred language to the responding counselor, who will connect to a live interpreter.
Deaf or hard of hearing American Sign Language users can contact the DDH through a direct videophone option via any videophone-enabled device and dialing 1-800-985-5990, or by selecting the “ASL Now” option on the DDH website: www.samhsa.gov/find-help/disaster-distress-helpline. FEMA previously issued Ensuring Civil Rights in Multiple Disasters During COVID-19 to support offer best practices for partners and communities facing a disproportionate rate of COVID-19 illness and death during response and recovery efforts during multiple disasters.
How to help survivors and communities impacted by Hurricane Ida
Be patient. Recovery will take many months or more. People can help by donating to or volunteering with the voluntary or charitable organization of their choice, many of which are already areas impacted by Ida supporting survivors. Learn how to best help those in need. Do not self-deploy. Seeing images of disaster may compel you to head to the impacted area. Until a need has been identified and the community affected by Hurricane Ida has requested support, volunteers should not enter the area. Cash is the best donation. When people support voluntary organizations with financial contributions, it helps ensure a steady flow of important services to the people in need after a disaster. To find a reputable organization, visit the National Voluntary Organizations Active in a Disaster Hurricane Ida page. Do not send or bring unsolicited donations. In the early stages of the response phase, unsolicited donations create storage and sorting challenges when focus is needed on response and recovery.
Stay safe from post-storm hazards
Put your health and safety first. Be careful in areas with storm damage or flooding. If you evacuated, return only when officials say it is safe to do so. Areas without power may experience heat advisories, which can lead to illness or a threat to life. Use a generator safely. Never use a generator inside a home, basement, shed or garage even if doors and windows are open. Keep generators outside and far away from your home. Windows, doors and vents could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors. Read both the label on your generator and the owner's manual and follow the instructions. Be aware of heat-related illnesses. Areas without power may experience heat advisories, which can lead to illness or a threat to life. Learn to recognize the signs of heat illness. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages such as water or juice. Keep your pets hydrated by providing plenty of freshwater for your pets and provide a shady area. Check on family, friends, and neighbors. Visit adults at risk at least twice a day and closely watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. If your home has floodwater inside or around it, don’t walk or wade in it. The water may be contaminated by oil, gasoline, or raw sewage. Never attempt to turn off the power or operate circuit breakers while standing in water.
Stay out of floodwater. Standing water may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines or contain hazards such as human and animal waste, dangerous debris, contaminants that can lead to illness, or wild or stray animals. Be careful when cleaning up. Wear protective clothing, including a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, work gloves, and sturdy thick-soled shoes. Do not try to remove heavy debris by yourself. Use an appropriate mask if cleaning mold or other debris. People with asthma and other lung conditions and/or immune suppression disorders should not enter buildings with indoor water leaks or mold growth that can be seen or smelled. Children should not take part in disaster cleanup work.
Avoid downed power or utility lines. They may be live with deadly voltage. Stay far away and report them immediately to your power company. Stay put. Stay off the roads. Emergency workers may be assisting people in flooded areas or cleaning up debris. You can help them by staying off the roads and out of the way. If you evacuated, do not return home until local officials say it is safe. Don’t drive through floodwaters. Almost half of all flash flood deaths happen in vehicles. When in your car, look out for flooding in low-lying areas at bridges and at highway dips. As little as 6 inches of water may cause you to lose control of your vehicle. Check on friends and family. If you are able, please check on your neighbors, friends, and family because some may need more help than others.
Stay safe during power outages
Avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. A grill, camp stove, or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices should never be used inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace, or any partially enclosed area. These should only be used outdoors and at least 20 feet away from windows.
Use only flashlights or battery-powered lanterns for emergency lighting. NEVER use candles during a blackout or power outage due to the extreme risk of fire. Power outages can impact the safety of food in your refrigerator and freezer. Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed to keep your food as fresh as possible. The refrigerator will keep food cold for about four hours. A full freezer will keep the temperature for about 48 hours. Use coolers with ice if necessary. Throw away any food that has been exposed to a temperature of 40° Fahrenheit (4° Celsius) or higher for two hours or more or that has an unusual odor, color or texture. When in doubt, throw it out! Never taste food or rely on appearance or odor to determine its safety. Some foods may look and smell fine, but if they have been at room temperature too long, heat-resistant bacteria that cause food-borne illnesses can start growing quickly.
President Biden’s Aug. 29 approval of a Major Disaster Declaration for the State of Louisiana is in addition to the Aug. 27 emergency declaration. If you were impacted by Ida and have insurance, contact your insurance company and FEMA. You will need to provide your insurance claim information to FEMA to determine eligibility for federal assistance. FEMA cannot provide assistance for losses that are covered by insurance. If you are in one of the Louisiana parishes approved for Individual Assistance and do not have insurance, you can apply for disaster assistance and get referrals to local, state and federal agencies and voluntary organizations. The fastest way to apply is through
Unity in Louisiana: (30 day update since August 19, 2016) We have helped with food and supplies for over 934 families at the five POD's (Point of Distribution) we set up in four Louisiana Parishes, distributed over 300,000 lbs of donated food to the five PODs, 150, 000 lbs of food donated to the Unity in Louisiana Coalition, two hot meal locations helping provide over 2,400 meals. There was a donation pledged to us on September 17, 2016 with seven truck loads (280, 000 lbs/156 pallets) of food for our hot meals initiative to be delivered to us on October 22, 2016. Providing tractor trailer of supplies such as diapers, hygiene kits, platex gloves, water and food boxes. Unity lead an agency for free air trans to neighboring states by private plane for families affected. We provided over 800 clean up buckets and one mobile feeding kitchen since Superstorm Sandy and it anticipated to be a cost of nearly $30 million. This flooding has claimed the lives of at least thirteen victims across five parishes with more than 31 inches of rainfall. There are over 7, 000 people desperately in need of our help. (10/31/16)