Disaster work is foundational to the United Way mission of mobilizing the caring power of communities to advance the common good. United Way is part of the community - there long before a catastrophe strikes and long after first responders have moved on.
At United Way, we know that one's fate is tied to the fate of others and that all of society benefits from improvements in quality of life. Our success at preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters underpins our goals in education, income and health.
United Way is committed to providing assistance to Gulf Coast communities in the present and in the long term. United Ways of the Gulf Coast Fund was established at the request of Gulf Coast United Ways and their community partners to meet the health and human service needs of individuals and households impacted by the 2010 BP oil spill. The money that we raised helped Gulf Coast communities with the basic needs for survival, but also the financial and moral support to not despair and continue to monitor, advocate, protect, speak up and not give up hope.
St. Landry-Evangeline United Way has also partnered with several United Ways in the Acadiana area to establish the Greater Acadiana United Way Disaster Fund to assist right here in our area. This fund has been launched to leverage resources and make the greatest impact in long-term recovery efforts for citizens exclusively living in Acadia, Assumption, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, Lafourche, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne and Vermilion parishes following Hurricane Isaac.
As after Katrina, and now with Isaac and all future storms this Hurricane Season, United Way will work with communities to identify what issues are of greatest need and then match our strengths and skill sets to make a real difference.
Funds are allocated to groups that have a long-term vested interest in the affected communities and that will be working on the human (economic, cultural, psychological, emotional) consequences of this disaster. In the short term, our fund will support organizations responding to immediate needs.In the long-term, the fund will assist in building resilient coastal communities along the entire Gulf Coast, as well as build upon Gulf Coast United Ways' successes in long term recovery in alignment with the 2018 goals in the areas of Education, Income and Health.
United Way is working to ensure those affected by the impending storm have access to information and resources.
2-1-1 is an easy to remember Information and Referral Specialists listen to concerns, and help to find health and/or human service programs in a community. 2-1-1 services in AL, FL, LA, and MS continue to play a key role in immediate response as well as the long-term recovery connecting callers with critical health and human services and volunteer and donation opportunities.
United Ways have a unique role in assuring a comprehensive response to community crisis. In large measure, our focus is on community recovery - with the understanding that a successful recovery takes planning and a coordinated response in the affected community by all sectors.
Successfully preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters supports United Way efforts to create long-term social change that produces healthy, well-educated and financially-stable individuals and families. United Ways provide needed funding to partner organizations and first-responders; support the 2-1-1 information and referral systems; convene public, private and nonprofit sectors to marshal resources; and coordinate volunteers.
2-1-1 is playing a key role in preparing for Isaac. 2-1-1 connects callers with critical disaster services and volunteer and donation opportunities. The storm is a potential hazard to Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. 2-1-1 plays many roles in response and recovery:
Provides information and referral (I&R) for residents, survivors, donors and volunteers.
Provides special tracking and/or coaching for donations and volunteers
Assists with rumor control
Provides telephone crisis intervention, comfort and assurance.
Maintains quality database of human service programs, and regularly posted updated "tips" and resources
Provides call-taking through skilled I&R Specialists. Note that 2-1-1 in the Gulf States have statewide emergency operations plans to ensure continuity of service by re-routing calls to unaffected areas or distributing calls to multiple 2-1-1 Centers when call volume spikes.
Coordinates services with government and community-based and faith-based organizations. In many cases, the 2-1-1 has a formal relationship and an established role within the Emergency Support Functions.
LA 2-1-1 is distributing information provided by the Governor's office and other governmental entities.
LA 2-1-1 is also working with United Way and other nongovernmental organization partners throughout the state to ensure any/all relief efforts.
LA 211 is working in close partnership with DCFS to ensure the most up to date information is available to meet the critical needs of all LA citizens. This public private partnership also includes GOHSEP, DHH, DOTD, LAVOAD, Parish EOC and UWW.
Thank you for all you do to LIVE UNITED.
2-1-1 - The go to number to call when individuals are in need of help and don't know where to turn.
United Ways of the Gulf Coast
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