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Pitt qualifies for federal disaster assistance


The Daily Reflector

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Pitt County is among nine additional counties that has qualified for federal disaster assistance, Gov. Roy Cooper’s office announced.

With the additions, 27 counties have now been approved for federal assistance, a news release from Cooper’s office said.

People in Hoke, Hyde, Johnston, Lee, Moore, Pitt, Richmond, Scotland and Wilson counties can now apply for assistance for uninsured and under insured damage and losses resulting from Hurricane Florence.

The previously designated counties are Beaufort, Bladen, Brunswick, Carteret, Columbus, Craven, Cumberland, Duplin, Harnett, Lenoir, Jones, New Hanover, Onslow, Pamlico, Pender, Robeson, Sampson, and Wayne. Additional counties are under consideration with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to be added to the list of included counties.

Federal disaster assistance is designed to provide grants for basic repairs to homes damaged by Hurricane Florence which made landfall in southeastern North Carolina on Sept. 14.

The basic repairs should make damaged homes safe, sanitary and secure while providing a temporary place to live while the owners make additional recovery plans.

As of Monday, approximately 80,000 people have registered for disaster assistance and more than $26 million in federal disaster assistance has been approved for individuals and families.

Anyone with a home damaged by Florence in any county is encouraged to begin the FEMA registration process by calling 1-800-621-FEMA to register via telephone or by visitingdisasterassistance.gov to register online.

Owners of damaged property who have a homeowner’s or flood insurance policy should file an insurance claim immediately before applying for disaster assistance.

Owners of damaged property should begin cleanup and repairs. They should take photos of all damage and save all receipts.

The statewide NC 211 information line can provide callers with housing, recovery and other storm-related details. Dial 2-1-1 or 888-892-1162, or text FLORENCE to 898211. The information line is staffed around the clock to connect North Carolinians to storm resources. Other resources can be obtained by visiting ncdps.gov/florence or following NC Emergency Management on Facebook and Twitter.

The following groups are seeking donations and providing assistance:

Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration has opened an Business Recovery Office in the Small Business and Technology Development Center in East Carolina University’s Willis Building, 300 E. First St. The center will help businesses that lost revenues and suffered damage due to the storm apply for no-interest SBA loans. Some nonbusiness entities and residents also may be eligible to apply. The office will provide assistance to residents of Pitt and neighboring counties. Pitt County businesses are eligible for assistance because Pitt is adjoining county to several that are federal disaster areas.


The Association of Mexicans in North Carolina is gathering and distributing resources for the local migrant farmworker populations through its office at 261 Belvoir Highway. Persons who wish to donate time or goods or to volunteer in other ways should contact call 367-8779, visit amexcan@amexcannc.org or follow AMEXCAN on Facebook at Association of Mexicans in North Carolina, Inc. or other social media.


Disabled Americans Veterans Post 37 is receiving donations for veterans affected by  Florence between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays through Oct. 5 at the JOY Soup Kitchen, 700 Albemarle Ave. Items needed are bottled water in gallon-size jugs; canned food and hygiene/toiletry items, such as soap, shampoo, toothpaste, toilet paper, toothbrushes and feminine products. Monetary donations are also welcome. Make checks payable to the Department Service Foundation and send to P.O. Box 28146, Raleigh, N.C. 27611. Funds will be used strictly for purchasing items and/or providing grants for Hurricane Florence relief for veterans and their families. Learn more about DAV's Disaster Relief Program at https://www.dav.org/veterans/outreach-programs/disaster-relief/.

A Home Cleanup Hotline at 1-800-451-1954 is available for hurricane survivors.

DisasterAssistance.gov provides a simple form that can help persons check what types of assistance may be available to meet their needs. Visit https://www.disasterassistance.gov/get-assistance/find-assistance

Red Cross

The American Red Cross urges people in unaffected areas to make an appointment to give blood or platelets to care for patients in the Southeast and throughout the country. Locally, blood drives will occur at the following locations:

■ 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday, ECU Mendenhall, West 10th Street

■ 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday, Vidant Medical Center, 2100 Stantonsburg Road

■ 6:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Eastern N.C. Blood Donor Center, 700 Cromwell Drive

■ 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday at St. Peter Catholic Church, 2700 E. Fourth St.

Monetary donations are also needed. Donors can designate their donation to Hurricane Florence relief efforts by choosing that option when donating on redcross.org or at 1-800-RED CROSS.

East Carolina University

ECU has set up a recovery operations center and created a website where individuals and businesses may request assistance and the ECU community may volunteer to help with recovering and rebuilding from the storm and its flooding.

The website is at florencerecovery.ecu.edu/ . ECU will match faculty, staff, students, alumni and community volunteers with civic and community organizations to assist in recovery efforts in North Carolina’s eastern counties as well as offer technical assistance to eastern North Carolina businesses through various offices and specialists at ECU.

ECU has also established a Hurricane Florence relief fund to help toward financing community volunteer operations and to help ECU students with emergency needs related to Florence. Contributors may donate at http://www.piratealumni.com/hurricanerelief by clicking on the rural Prosperity Initiative, Students Treasure Chest or Chancellor’s Fund for Excellence box. Donations will provide the necessary tools, equipment and other resources necessary for efforts, as well as aid students in needed and support other community-recovery initiatives.


Food Bank

Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina will be accepting donations of canned goods “that make a meal” plus paper products and household cleaning supplies to assist households in the region experiencing flood damage and food-insecurity. Items will be accepted 8:30 a.m.–4 p.m. Monday-Friday at The Greenville Branch warehouse facility. 

See most needed items at http://www.foodbankcenc.org/site/PageServer?pagename=getinvolved_disaster/. Monetary also donations are being accepted on the secure web page.