Northeast Iowa Flooding – 2016

pic_disaster2016 Flood Activity Report 

Starting in August and continuing through October, repeated storms and flooding have impacted many families and communities within our Archdiocese. So much of our preparedness and response efforts are performed with limited exposure or knowledge to others, however be assured we are working to support parishes and communities in northeast Iowa year round. Below is a summary of Archdiocesan efforts related to this most recent flooding.

Preparedness Phase:

  • Developed a Parish Disaster Preparedness Guide and facilitated workshops throughout the Archdiocese to help parishes develop their own individual plans (2010-11)
  • To date, 56 parishes have started the process of developing a disaster preparedness plan
  • 88 parishes have assigned a Parish Disaster Coordinator
  • Developed an Archdiocesan Disaster Communication Plan to streamline communication between parishes, the pastoral center and Catholic Charities
  • Catholic Charities’ Disaster Services Coordinator Lori Williams serves on the Board of the Iowa Disaster Human Resource Council and Chair of the Disaster Case Advocacy Committee to keep abreast of statewide resources and support
  • Assisted in developing and advocating for State Disaster Case Management legislation signed by the Governor in 2016

Response Phase:

  • Archdiocesan Disaster & Crisis Management Committee convened to begin initial assessment of impact to parishes and communities
  • Williams prepared through contact with Iowa Disaster Human Resource Council

Recovery Phase:

  • Williams reached out to 29 parishes offering support and assessing needs
  • Williams began working with local disaster response groups in each county that was/is heavily impacted and will continue to be involved with these groups as needs are assessed over the next several months
  • On-site support from Williams is provided to parishes, as needed or requested
  • Ongoing communication via Official Bulletin, Catholic Charities website and daily reports to Archbishop Jackels are provided to keep all parties informed

As Chair of the Iowa Disaster Human Resource Council’s Disaster Case Advocacy Committee, Williams has prepared materials for training and implementation of the State Disaster Case Management program. When that program begins, Williams will be a trainer.