The Rutland Long Term Recovery Committee’s first volunteer project of the season will be taking place this Friday and Saturday (April 19-20) from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Cuttingsville. Volunteers from Grace Church, Spring Lake Ranch and Shrewsbury‘s Irene Response group will be working together to cut out a log and debris jam, and will repair a barn pushed of its supports and clean out an old dump exposed by Irene’s flood waters.
The work will take place in Cuttingsville on VT Route 103, directly across the road from the Spring Lake Ranch farm stand. Useable wood from the debris pile will be donated back to Spring Lake Ranch by the homeowners, to support the Ranch’s sugaring operation.
If you would like to volunteer, contact Andrea Varney, volunteer and resource coordinator for the Rutland County LTRC at (802) 345-9482 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After more than a year of helping flood victims pay for and repair their properties, members of the Rutland County Long Term Recovery Committee said their efforts will come to an end in August when funding for the organization’s two case managers expires.
Long before that date, members of the group want to hear from and help anyone from the two counties — with the exception of Pittsfield, Hancock and Granville, which are served by other relief efforts — who still need help.
“April 15 is the deadline, but it’s not a hard and fast deadline,” Lynne Klamm, the RCLTRC chairwoman, said during a group meeting Thursday in Rutland.
“We need to line things up before August because it’s not like we can fix this stuff in a week or two,” she said.
The group — made up of volunteers, residents and members of organizations ranging from Green Mountain Power to Rutland Mental Health Services — has been working since November 2011 to assist residents stricken by flooding from Irene.
In the last 17 months, the group has worked with about 130 clients, according to John Miller, a recovery case manager with the group. Some of those residents received volunteer and professional help repairing their homes and properties, while many others were connected to state and federal resources that provided specialized services.
Miller and fellow case manager William Canfield said about 40 people qualified for funding from four state, local and private sources that RCLTRC has access to.
The group has dispensed $227,710 to flood victims thus far — an average of$6,697 per client — and there’s more available, including about $22,000 in relief funds that the RCLTR has direct control over, Klamm said.
Over the course of the last year and a half, Klamm said her group has repeatedly called residents who filed claims with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and tried in other ways to get the word out that help is available.
But the group’s volunteer coordinator, Andrea Varney, told members Thursday that in recent follow-up visits with flood victims in her home town of Proctor she had found some who were either unaware or unwilling to apply for help.
“The people who I’ve met or called have mostly said there are people out there worse off then they are,” she said.
While the group is trying to find those in need of help, it’s also looking for volunteers willing to lend a hand in efforts ranging from mucking out crawl spaces and grading flooded areas to repairing foundations and coordinating construction efforts.
Those in need of help with work or unpaid expenses from Tropical Storm Irene can call 786-5952 or email Klamm at email@example.com.
Those interested in volunteering can contact Varney at 345-9482 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact us if you need help.
The recent cold weather has proven difficult for many Vermonters. If your heating elements are still damaged as a result of Tropical Storm Irene, don't hesitate to call us to see how we can help you.
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Article published Dec 8, 2012
Thanks for the support
On behalf of the Rutland County Long-Term Recovery Committee, I would like to thank Sherri Birkheimer-Rooker of the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Southern Vermont, Mary Crowley, and Karen Seward for all of the countless hours and hard work they put into the creation and fruition of The heARTs of Rutland Project. Also an immense thank you to all of the sponsors, volunteers and artists that made the event on Nov. 2 at The Paramount Theatre possible.
On Dec. 3 Sherri, Mary and Karen presented a donation of $22,000 to the Rutland County Long-Term Recovery Committee for disaster relief in Rutland County. I cannot begin to express the gratitude our committee has for this kind and generous gesture. These funds will be used to help fulfill unmet needs for victims of Tropical Storm Irene.
Although it may not seem evident in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, there are still individuals and families here in our communities that have not completely recovered from Tropical Storm Irene of August 2011. These victims have tried to make do with minor repairs or no repair of any kind. The funds provided will make for warmer, healthier, and safer homes.
This project has most certainly shown that Rutland has heart, and this gesture will definitely warm the hearts of individuals and families in need.
(Disaster Case Manager BROC- Community Action in South Western Vermont)