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Volunteers Needed for Flood Cleanup Efforts; Thousands of Residents Need Assistance Removing Damaged Belongings

Contact: See contact information below.

News Release No. 9 – August 28, 2014 – 3 p.m.

SOUTHEAST MICHIGAN – The Michigan Community Service Commission (MCSC), the State of Michigan’s lead agency on volunteerism, is looking for volunteers to help Southeast Michigan residents clean up damaged homes after the Aug. 11 torrential rain and flooding. Volunteers can sign up by going to semichiganflood.givegab.com or calling 2-1-1.

The MCSC has collected information from thousands of Michiganders across Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties who have requested volunteer assistance to remove damp belongings, eliminate odors, and remove moldy drywall and paneling. The commission is working with several volunteer organizations to help numerous families—including the elderly and people with functional needs—but there has been a shortage of local volunteers to provide assistance.

“While the flood didn’t last long, it left behind houses damaged by sewage and dirty water; in some cases the water was two feet deep or more in basements,” said Ginna Holmes, executive director of the MCSC. “This damage can’t typically be seen on the outside, but many residents cannot currently live in their homes due to the mold, smell and unsanitary conditions. We are asking for any and all volunteers to give a few hours of time to get our neighbors back in their homes quickly and safely.”

Prospective volunteers can also visit a Volunteer Reception Center to sign up to help from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 30, and Sunday, Aug. 31, at Starr Presbyterian Church, 1717 W. 13 Mile Road, in Royal Oak. Volunteers are asked to come prepared to be immediately sent to a work site and have closed-toe shoes, work clothes and work gloves.

Residents still needing volunteer cleanup assistance are asked to call 2-1-1 to be connected with volunteers or fill out an assistance form at www.michigan.gov/miflood. A Recovery Coordination Center has been established by the MCSC in partnership with local emergency managers and the State of Michigan to organize all of the Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster groups that have responded to the disaster and match them with the residents needing assistance and the volunteers who have signed up to help.

About the MCSC

The MCSC builds a culture of service by providing vision and resources to strengthen communities through volunteerism. Signature programs include AmeriCorps, Mentor Michigan, Volunteer Michigan and the Governor’s Service Awards. The MCSC is housed in the Michigan Department of Human Services, whose mission is to improve the quality of life in Michigan by providing services to vulnerable children and adults that will strengthen the community and enable families and individuals to move toward independence.


About the Disaster

Gov. Rick Snyder declared a “state of disaster” on Aug. 13 for Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. By declaring a "state of disaster," the state of Michigan will make available all state resources in cooperation with local response and recovery efforts in the disaster area as outlined in the Michigan Emergency Management Plan. Snyder's declaration authorizes the Michigan State Police, Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) to coordinate state efforts.

The public is encouraged to monitor local media for up-to-date disaster information.  For updated information and safety tips, follow the MSP/EMHSD on Twitter at @MichEMHS or go to www.michigan.gov/miflood


The State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) is the emergency operations center for the state of Michigan. Located in Lansing, the SEOC is overseen by the MSP/EMHSD and coordinates response and recovery efforts by state agencies and local government.  The SEOC is staffed by members of state agencies for decision making and information coordination during disasters or emergencies in the state of Michigan.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Jessi Adler
MCSC Communications Director
Office: (517) 335-1013
Cell: (517) 230-9923
adlerj@michigan.gov

State Emergency Operations Center
Public Information Officer
(517) 324-2304
msp-seocpio@michigan.gov