Flood Assistance Partnership provides hands-on help

Catawba County Emergency Management has organized a Flood Assistance Partnership to address individual family needs following the extensive flooding that has affected Catawba County and other parts of the area since July 27, 2013.

The partnership of non-profit, volunteer, faith based organizations and Catawba County human services agencies will seek to provide hands on assistance such as debris and mold removal, resources for replacing personal belongs, and also will work to address housing or medical needs.

This Flood Assistance Partnership is being offered even as Catawba County awaits word on an Individual Assistance Disaster Declaration requested by North Carolina Governor Patrick McCrory, which could provide low interest loans and individual grants to qualified, affected residents.

“The County is using a three-pronged approach to the disaster recovery, said Karyn Yaussy, Catawba County Emergency Management Coordinator. “One prong is the damage assessment and formal request to the Governor for a U.S. Small Business Administration declaration and N.C. Individual Assistance Disaster Declaration. The second prong is working with State Emergency Management officials and affected municipalities on options for public assistance, which will address the repairing of damaged infrastructure such as bridges, roads and public utilities. The third prong is establishing a collaboration of voluntary agencies and faith-based groups that assist residents needing help to clean and repair their individual home.

The Flood Assistance Program partners include non-profit and local government organizations: American Red Cross, Christ Church, Eastern Catawba Cooperative Christian Ministry, NC Baptist Disaster Relief, New Life Christian Church, Samaritan’s Purse, United Methodist Committee on Relief, Catawba County United Way, Catawba County Emergency Management, Catawba County Public Health, and Catawba County Social Services.

“We are concerned about all our residents’ disaster recovery, and we are very aware that there are people who need extra hands to help deal with their situation” Yaussy added. “We know there are elderly people or those with medical conditions that make it impossible to do their own clean-up and have no one to help. We are interested in making sure people who were living on the margin before the disaster do not fall through the cracks. We want to find and help the single parent with small children or the person who is unemployed and affected by this disaster.”

“Catawba County is a strong community. Normally our emergency responders, and local volunteers with groups like the American Red Cross, UMCOR and Baptist Disaster Relief are going to other places, even across the country helping other communities. Now our community is hurting and these groups are helping us. It is very humbling but we are extremely grateful for the offers of help,” Yaussy concluded

How affected residents in need can seek assistance (please help us relay this information): Through a web site at or residents without internet access may call (704) 517-7271 to request Flood Assistance.