The National Society St. Vincent de Paul's Disaster Services Corporation (DSC) responds to major disasters such as floods, wildfires, tornadoes and other events throughout the United States. DSC supports St. Vincent de Paul Councils and Conferences when disaster strikes locally with the help of their Rapid Response Teams along with Rapid Response and Long-Term Recovery Grants.
Sacramento Diocesan Council Disaster Relief
The Sacramento Disaster Relief team has provided local disaster support for many years, including the Berryessa, Butte, and Trinity Fires in 2014 - 2016. It also assisted during the Oroville Dam Spillover in 2017 by linking with local conferences to provide temporary shelter and supplies for those who were unable to stay in the homes.
In November 2018, the town of Paradise was hit by the most devastating fire in California's history. The Sacramento Diocesan Council has supported the ongoing need for relief for this disaster known as the Camp Fire by establishing a Disaster Case Management Program in partnership with Catholic Charities of California.
We have 10 Disaster Case Managers working in Paradise, Chico, and Gridley answering the many needs of the survivors. Most recently this area has again been hit with wildfires and survivors of the Camp Fire are again experiencing the trauma caused by these all too frequent disasters.
What is a Disaster Case Manager?
Disaster Case Managers (DCM) work with partner organizations to address unmet needs through volunteer assistance, in-kind donations, and accessing all available sources of potential funding including FEMA and SBA appeals, as well as, in some cases, financial support to fund unmet needs not covered by insurance or
other avenues of support.
What does a Disaster Case Manager do?
A Disaster Case Manager helps survivors to develop a realistic long-term recovery plan for recovering from the disaster. The disaster case manager also helps identify and facilitate access to appropriate community resources that will support the plan.
Camp Fire Success Stories
One of the DCMs has been working with a couple who was living in a FEMA unit, without any leads on housing. Prior to the Camp Fire, this special needs couple was living in an apartment in Paradise, and they wished to return to Paradise. Life has been difficult for this developmentally disabled couple since the disaster took place. They no longer had the home they were accustomed to or the same employment opportunities and found themselves in a FEMA trailer far from Paradise. Upon receiving the case in June, the DCM began coordinating with the Disability Action Center to get this couple rehoused in Paradise. After searching for and finding an affordable apartment, the DCM applied for assistance with the security deposit and furniture. This couple has since moved into their new apartment in Paradise and turned in the key to their FEMA unit. They are as close to their pre-fire state as possible. For this couple, they will no longer be in limbo and can resume their lives, living back in Paradise in a place they can afford. The DCM played a critical part in this recovery, not only locating and facilitating the rental, but also in providing furniture for the apartment. Due to their disabilities, this couple could have easily found themselves without a home when the FEMA park closed. Instead, they are happily rehoused in Paradise and their case is being closed.
One of our DCMs has been working with a survivor who is living in a FEMA unit in Gridley. Prior to the Camp Fire, this senior was living in a small place and working at Kmart in Paradise. Life has been difficult for this individual since the disaster took place. She managed to get a job at the dollar store in Gridley, but with part-time hours was unable to find an affordable place to rent. Fortunately, a Section 8 voucher was approved for her. The DCM began searching for a place for this survivor to rent and facilitated a lease agreement between the landlord of SVDP’s Gridley office and the client. In approximately one week, this survivor will move out of the FEMA unit and into a home that will be sustainable for her in the long term. She will be as close to her pre-fire state as possible. She will once again have an apartment of her own and a part-time job at a discount retail store. For this senior, she will no longer be in limbo and can resume her life, living in a place she can afford. The DCM played a critical part in this recovery plan, not only locating and facilitating the rental, but in also providing furniture for the apartment. This relationship with the landlord has led him coming to our agency before listing any of his rentals. This greatly reduces the “competition” for our DCMs to house survivors.
DONATE TODAY and make a difference in a survivor’s life.