CENTRAL JACKSON COUNTY, Mo. –To help better manage the outpouring of support for Joplin, Missouri tornado survivors, disaster recovery experts have established some simple ways to help, whether volunteering or donating resources.
The Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offer those who are impacted or just wanting to help the following advice:
Volunteer or Donate
The easiest way to help is to call 2-1-1 in most areas in Missouri to volunteer time or make a donation. Unsolicited responders compete with disaster victims and emergency personnel for food, water, valuable cell phone bandwidth and lodging.
Cash is the best because it offers voluntary agencies the most flexibility in obtaining the most-needed resources. You can donate to the United Way by calling 2-1-1 or donate to the Red Cross by visiting any area Price Chopper, texting REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 or calling 1-800-RED-CROSS.
Confirm what emergency responders need from voluntary organizations before collecting donations. Unsolicited donated goods such as used clothing, miscellaneous household items, and mixed or perishable foodstuffs require helping agencies to redirect valuable resources away from providing services to sort, package, transport, warehouse, and distribute items that may not meet the needs of disaster survivors.
If you have a quantity of a given item or class of item to donate, and you need help in determining which organizations to give to, you can make your offer through www.aidmatrixnetwork.org/fema and click on Missouri.
Locating a Loved One
Residents affected by the tornado wanting to notify friends and family that they are safe are asked to go online to https://safeandwell.communityos.org/cms. This Web site can also be used to check on a loved one in the Joplin area. This site is easy and free and only basic information is needed. If you are not able to go online, call 417-659-5464 to register or find someone who has registered.
The CJCEMA is an emergency management agency consisting of the Central Jackson County Fire Protection District, the City of Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Lake Tapawingo and surrounding unincorporated areas. The EOC is located at the Central Jackson County Fire Protection District’s Training Facility and brings together representatives from Police, Fire, Public Works and Emergency Management agencies.
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