Long Term Recovery in Disaster

Long Term Recovery Efforts Underway for Local Disasters

2023 has seen a rough start with 3 disasters hitting our two service counties of Coosa and Tallapoosa. 

  • January 12, 2023 Tornadoes - hit both Coosa and Tallapoosa Counties
  • March 26 Hail Story - ravaged the Town of Camp Hill (Tallapoosa County)
  • April 15 Dadeville Shooting (Tallapoosa County)

In ANY disaster - natural or caused by man - there are four phases of any long term disaster recovery plan: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery

Disaster is a natural or human-caused incident that disrupts normal life, causing physical and/or emotional trauma and/or damage to property and/or community infrastructure. Disasters may include hurricane, tornado, wind storm, flood, tidal wave, tsunami, earthquake, volcanic eruption, landslide, mudslide, snow or ice storm, wild fire, explosion, acts of public violence or terrorism, or other human caused or technological events involving toxic and / or radiological materials, etc.

Recovery is the period following a disaster and the community’s early response to that disaster, whereby things return to a new normal. After neighbors move from shock to action, communities organize by implementing plans and structures aimed at bringing help to affected individuals and families in a holistic, integrated process that brings needed resources to the most vulnerable. Recovery following each disaster is unique and may last weeks or years. Disasters are never welcome, but they give communities an opportunity to build back stronger. Often, damages sustained in disaster can be prevented from recurring by implementing a long-term recovery strategy grounded in risk reduction analysis and mitigation.

Currently there are Long Term Recovery Committees (LTRCs) formed for both Coosa and Tallapoosa Counties. Each committee is comprised of volunteer leaders from each county who are dedicated to helping the citizen return to a new normal. As is stated in the title, this is a LONG TERM process with many steps, including working through any federal, state or regional resources (like FEMA, SBA, or USDA), through the insurance process (if insured) and case management. 

Currently both county LTRC's are working with UMCOR, the humanitarian and relief arm of the United Methodist Church, for case management. Case management is required to help us evaluate the unmet needs of the survivors from the January 12 tornadoes. 

Kayla Richardson is our local UMCOR case manager. She is working to contact all local survivors in Coosa and Tallapoosa counties to begin the case management evaluation of need process. Her number is 334-554-9038 and her email is kayla@awfumc.org should any survivors be contacted. We would ask that survivors respond to all calls and/or emails. 

There are two phases of recovery:

  1. Short term recovery: Many emergency and relief programs complete their work. Restoration of infrastructure and vital life support systems happen in this phase. The community identifies local resources to form a long term recovery group (LTRG), and initiation of plans for permanent housing begins.
  2. Long term recovery: Transition occurs between the presence of national organizations and the local community. Implementation begins for disaster case management and recovery initiatives administered by the local community. Construction activities to include repairing, rebuilding and/or relocation of homes proceeds during this phase. Resumption of the routines of daily life characterizes this phase

In it's most basic terms, the goal of Long Term Recovery is: To help residents recover from and restore their lives after a disaster in a timely manner.

To reach the Coosa County Long Term Recovery Committee (LTRC), please email coosaltr@gmail.com

To reach the Tallapoosa County Long Term Recovery Committee (LTRC), please email tallapoosaltr@gmail.com