FEMA residents: It’s difficult to imagine, but nearly three years following Hurricane Michael, recovery is still underway. Doorways has been tirelessly working with the remaining 8 residents that are still in FEMA Housing providing case management and financial assistance. Of these survivors, four were homeowners who ae unable to return to their destroyed homes and four are renters who are either elderly or in poor health, making it difficult to for them to afford the skyrocketed rental rates. However, we were able to assist two of the four homeowners with securing insurance, paying for electric hook-ups and making water deposits enabling them to move into newly purchased FEMA trailers that they now own and the four renters are slotted to move into a new income-based apartment complex that are expected to be available in the next 30 days. We have worked with each of these families to assist with replacement of identification documents, electric, water, application fees and will assist with paying the rental deposits when they are ready to move into the new apartments.
The Community Resource Center (CRC) - formerly the Community Recovery Center:
The CRC continues to see residents. Since Doorways took over operations of the CRC in May 2019, we have assisted 4, 886 residents over 85% of whom were impacted by Hurricane Michael; 92% of those survivors resided in Bay County, the hardest hit of the six counties we serve. Housing remains the most highly requested assistance. In late June, the CRC is moving to a new location where we can also offer food distribution and showers in addition to our current suite of services. The new location is part of a defunct school campus where we will be part of a larger resiliency center created in response to the fact that our area had three concurrent states of emergencies – and we never know what will happen next. This campus can also double as a disaster shelter and Command Center should we have another disaster.
In response to COVID-19 and those still struggling from the Hurricane, The City of Panama City has purchased three modular housing units that have been donated to us through Rebuild Bay County, Inc. The units will be used for a combination of temporary housing in the event of another disaster and beginning later this month to serve as a permanent housing solution for homeless families. Photos of the units are attached to this report. If the pilot is successful, the City has agreed to purchase additional units. The units will be located adjacent to the CRC.Attachments: