Community Update Following Hurricane Michael – FamiliesFirst Network of Lakeview
October 17th, 2018
The following update was provided from the impacted areas by FamiliesFirst Network of Lakeview CEO, Shawn Salamida and Director of Administration and External Affairs, Jenn Petion.
In addition to our own preparations locally, FFN had daily calls with DCF, Big Bend Community Based Care, and WCSO CPI among others to talk about how we might assist with the response. These agencies are working collaboratively and intentionally to support the staff and families that were impacted by the storm.
Beginning Tuesday, FFN put a small team on the ground in Panama City to assist with visiting kids and families from that area. As we’re assessing conditions we will fine-tune our communication and coordination process among the agencies over these next few days.
So this week, we will be evaluating and planning any additional assistance we can provide in coming weeks. A second team will be going over next week.
In addition to these 2 teams, many others have stepped forward and offered to assist. They are on standby as we fine-tune our process and will be deployed as needed and requested by Big Bend Community Based Care.
I am proud to say that the majority of these first 2 teams are non case management personnel, but rather are from support divisions such as quality and policy and recruitment. Knowing the challenges we have with FFN caseload, with these initial 2 waves we are trying not to draw too much resource away from our own case management team.
We are also organizing other means to support the impacted area, such as donation collection points at each service center.
Lakeview Center’s behavioral health division is supplying crisis counselors to the area, and Baptist Health Care Foundation is providing financial support to the hurricane victims, including supplies for our staff making visits to provide to the families we see. It is a full team effort.
Thank you to everyone for your willingness to help and for the things you are already doing or have done to support our neighbors to the east. You are helping us fulfill our mission, as well as our vision of being a trusted partner to the communities we serve.
Our staff, including Shawn, listening to a briefing from CHS executive director Lindsey Berling Cannon alongside their staff, many of whom lost their homes but were ready to go check on kids.