The Nebraska Strong Recovery Project wants residents of Saline County to know it is there for them in time of need.
Since the statewide flooding in March, the outreach program has been working to provide support and identify needs of those in rural areas.
“Right now, our staff is going out and canvassing, looking for individual needs and trying to problem solve,” disaster behavioral coordinator Theresa Henning said.
The outreach program partners with as many local volunteer groups and faith-based entities as possible to provide assistance.
With harvest wrapping up and the holiday season fast approaching, Henning said the Nebraska Strong staff is preparing for an imflux of both direct and agricultural needs in the state.
“We’re seeing a lot of times people are not connecting (stress) back to the disaster,” Henning said. “We want to help people in every phase of the disaster.”
Henning said disaster relief looks a bit different in rural areas than urban. In some situations, canvassing doesn’t work because there are still people unable to get inside their homes or who have been relocated for their safety.
The Nebraska Strong staff then has to think of alternative ways to connect people to the resources they need.
“We’ve been using plat maps as a way of seeing where people are and trying to hit areas that were really affected by the flood,” Henning said.
The ultimate goal of the Nebraska Strong Recovery Project is to get those affected by the flood and other disasters to a point where they can begin to rebuild.
Henning said there are many ways for people to get involved and help out, suggesting they contact her at (402) 441-4358 as a starting point.
Those who may need assistance or just want to know about the services offered through the project, or can visit www. region5systems.net/nebraska-strong-recovery-project. There is also a 24-hour rural response hotline that is free and anonymous for anyone who may be in need. It can be reached by calling 1-800-464-0258.