Agreement allows nonprofit to aid county in disaster volunteer coordination

Published: Thursday, December 12, 2013 at 16:59 PM.

“When a disaster hits, the first thing they do is think, ‘How can I help?’ … Often times it becomes more of a hindrance than a help because there’s no system of coordinating them. Even with the tornadoes, 8,000 people, that is a lot. … So this aims to kind of alleviate that problem,” Wagner said.

To have a ready base of volunteers, those interested in helping in the wake of a natural disaster can pre-register at and indicate what skills and experience they have. Folks can also pre-register for debris removal and minor home repairs.

Bryson said that county staff and the United Way have been working on the agreement for two years after seeing how they tracked and worked with citizens and those donating services and goods during the April 2011 tornado. The new addition to emergency response plans is now being included in emergency officials’ annual natural disaster preparation exercise in order to be prepared for the next natural disaster, he said.

“It puts us in a situation where we can look more at disaster response,” he said.

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