TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Hurricane Ian is currently heading toward South Carolina and regaining its strength. For those in Florida, disaster relief is available. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is giving information on how to get disaster aid and assistance now that the storm has passed out of Florida.
Those applying should take photos to document damage and start cleanup and repair efforts to prevent more damage from happening and keep all receipts for that work.
On top of that, the aid can also help give funds for temporary lodging or home repair, in addition to other costs for recovery.
In Florida, FEMA said residents, both homeowners and renters in Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Pinellas and Sarasota counties can apply for the help. Additionally, four Florida counties, Orange, Osceola, Polk and Seminole, were given an expedited status, according to FEMA.
FEMA said Hurricane Ian survivors can apply for disaster assistance:
- At www.disasterassistance.gov
- By calling 800-621-3362 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern Time
- Using the FEMA mobile app.
- For those who use a relay service such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA the number for that service.
When applying for aid with FEMA to cover hurricane damage and other disaster assistance, be ready to provide them with:
- A current phone number where you can be contacted
- Your address at the time of the disaster and the address where you are now staying
- Your Social Security number
- A general list of damage and losses
- Banking information if you choose direct deposit
- If insured, the policy number or the agent and/or the company name
The state of Florida is taking donations and encouraging residents and supporters to send financial assistance instead, as supplies of water, food, and other items were in position before the storm’s arrival. To give to the Florida Disaster Fund, head online here.
First Lady Casey DeSantis provided an update on funding levels for Hurricane Ian relief after the storm.
“We are very appreciative and thankful for the outpouring of support. Raising more than $10 million dollars in one day to The Florida Disaster Fund demonstrates the kindness and compassion from people across this state and nation,” First Lady Casey DeSantis said. “These private sector contributions will be deployed quickly and effectively to meet the immediate needs of those most impacted by the storm. We cannot thank people enough for their generosity.”
According to the governor’s office, the following have provided funding, in addition to donations from individuals.
- Walmart ($1,500,000)
- Amazon ($1,000,000)
- Centene Charitable Foundation ($1,000,000)
- Ian MacKechnie of Amscot Financial ($1,000,000)
- Florida Blue ($1,000,000)
- Lennar ($1,000,000)
- Boeing ($750,000)
- Publix ($500,000)
- TECO ($500,000)
- Simply Healthcare ($350,000)
- AirBnb ($250,000)
- Wells Fargo ($250,000)
- Verizon ($125,000)
- CVS ($100,000)
- Duke Energy ($100,000)
- Goldman Sachs ($100,000)
- Rumble ($100,000)
- Florida Power and Light ($50,000)
- National Christian Foundation ($50,000)
- PGA Tour ($25,000)
- Horne ($25,000)
If you have any questions, you can contact Volunteer Florida at 850-414-7400 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, for those interested in providing more support to those impacted by Hurricane Ian, the American Red Cross has set up a partnership with WFLA and parent company Nexstar to assist with relief efforts in Florida.
People looking to donate to the American Red Cross as they assist Floridians affected by Hurricane Ian can do so by clicking here.