30 days since Hurricane Matthew declaration, 30 days left to register

December 2, 2016  //  

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — As the first 30 days in the Commonwealth of Virginia recovery concludes following Hurricane Matthew, people in seven cities and two counties are eligible for disaster assistance.

The cities of Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach are eligible for FEMA’s Individuals and Households program. Eligible jurisdictions for the Public Assistance program are Chesapeake, Franklin, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach and the counties of Isle of Wight and Southampton.

During the first 30 days, more than 4,200 people have registered for more than $7 million in federal assistance of that:

  • More than $6.1 million for rent or repair of disaster-damaged housing
    • More than $3 million was approved for rental assistance
  • More than $940,000 for Other Needs Assistance
    • Nearly $110,000 per day was dispersed for eligible home repairs
  • More than 1,400 survivors have visited Commonwealth/FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers.
  • More than 3,000 FEMA housing inspections have been completed.
  • FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance teams in the field have spoken with nearly 7,500 survivors and have visited more than 115 homes per day.
  •  The Small Business Administration, a FEMA and Commonwealth partner, has approved nearly $6.8 million in low-interest disaster loans to more than 3,100 homeowners, renters and business owners to repair, rebuild and replace damaged property and contents.
  • The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has received more than 2,220 claims and paid more than $22 million to policyholders, including advance payments to help homeowners get started quickly on repairs.

Disaster response involves the whole community, FEMA and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) joined forces with voluntary groups, community agencies, faith-based organizations, and neighbors helping neighbors rebuild and repair damages.

Voluntary organizations provide a wide range of assistance to disaster survivors, including flood debris cleanup, shelter, food, clothing, counseling, home repairs, and reconstruction. These organizations belong to the Virginia chapter of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters, a coalition of nonprofit organizations that respond to disasters.

Virginia voluntary and faith-based organizations include: Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church, Southern Baptist Conservatives, Volunteers of America, The Salvation Army, 211, Point of Light, Federation of Food Banks, Operation Blessing, Team Rubicon, Crisis Cleanup, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, American Red Cross and Baptist General Association of Virginia, as well as dozens of other organizations providing assistance to survivors who have unmet disaster-related needs.

Survivors who still need help cleaning up with other recovery needs can turn to the many voluntary, faith and community-based groups that are donating their time and skills in Virginia. These groups are always the first and last presence to help disaster survivors recover.

Disaster recovery officials are still on the ground in all seven cities and continue interacting with survivors in a variety of ways to help them with the recovery:

  • Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs): more than 4,200 survivors have visited the six DRC that have been open. These are facilities where survivors can meet face-to-face to discuss their cases with federal, Commonwealth, local, and volunteer The first centers opened less than a week after the presidential disaster declaration. Visit FEMA.gov/DRC to find locations.
  • Disaster Survivor Assistance Specialists (DSAs): nearly 7,500 survivors have spoken with FEMA disaster survivor assistance Specialist are FEMA staff who canvass affected neighborhoods and communities to encourage survivors to register for help, provide recovery information, and listen to their concerns.
  • Mitigation Specialists: free consultations are available at DRCs and by calling the flood helpline: 868-379-9531 where survivors can get tips and techniques on building hazard-resistant

If you had storm damage no matter how small, here’s how to register for help or to get more information:


FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-3362 (voice, 711 or video relay service). TTY users can call 800-462-7585.

The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and can cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged real estate and personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations.

December 2, 2016
DR-4291-VA NR-21
News Desk: 540-686-2972

Be ready. Be willing to help.

Virginia Disaster Relief Fund