Monday, August 20, 2018

FEMA seeking disaster case management providers for Puerto Rico

By on June 5, 2018

SAN JUAN – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is soliciting proposals from nonprofit organizations with experience in providing disaster case management services to provide assistance to some 23,000 people.

The agency said that more than one million island residents registered for FEMA assistance, “and significant unmet needs have been identified” in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, including “housing shortages, increased unemployment, access to affordable food, access to medical supplies and prescriptions, mental and behavioral health needs, and continued infrastructure impacts.”

Unmet needs are considered an “un-resourced item, support, or assistance that has been assessed and verified” by government representatives or voluntary and faith-based organizations as necessary for recovery. These may also include food, clothing, shelter or first aid and long-term needs such as “financial, physical, emotional or spiritual well-being.”

FEMA is looking for organizations that have “existing staff and/or facilities in Puerto Rico or connections to organizations on the island, to implement and provide disaster case management” in support of those who continue to face difficulties after the historic 2017 hurricane season.

Case management entails outreach to households, in coordination with communities, as well as through Community Recovery Centers (CRCs) being set up to “foster a localized, community-based one-stop shop approach to disaster recovery,” according to the agency.

Case managers would be tasked with directing individuals with unmet needs “to resources within in the CRC, make referrals to external resources, and schedule long-term disaster case management as needed.” The selected organizations will be required to assign staff to provide case management at these facilities, “as well as to meet with survivors in their communities, at their homes, etc.”

Among the disaster resources that may be considered are “insurance payments, federal disaster assistance (i.e. FEMA Individual and Households Program (IHP) grants, and Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Loans), state assistance,” and voluntary agency and “faith-based assistance.”

Full no-cost-share funding will be awarded as a cooperative agreement between FEMA and the recipient out of the Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) under the major disaster declaration for Puerto Rico.

The program is expected to be awarded by July 15 and last for 12 months. Recipients may request an extension for up to 12 months.

Applications are due June 17. For more information, visit www.fema.gov.

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