In what is being called “historic” flooding, Iowa, Nebraska and Wisconsin have all declared states of emergency for swollen rivers, breeched levees and infrastructure destroyed by fast moving flood waters. As of March 19, four fatalities have been reported; three in Nebraska, which was hit particularly hard with 2⁄3 of its 94 counties and 4 tribal areas in declared states of emergency. Early estimates suggest agriculture and livestock losses topping $1 billion for a region where agriculture accounts for 20% of the GDP of Nebraska and 1 in 4 jobs in the state.
Nebraska (home of CompanyCam) and the Midwest is going to need both immediate and long-term help to rebuild. If you’d like to help support flood relief efforts here are a list of organizations already aiding with disaster relief and recovery.
American Red Cross: The Red Cross Disaster Relief program will continue to accept monetary donations at redcross.org/local/nebraska as it runs multiple emergency shelters throughout Iowa and Nebraska for those displaced by flood waters. Additionally you can text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
United Way: Go to unitedwaymidlands.org/floodrelief or text FLOODRELIEF to 41444. 100% of every donation through the United Way will be given to nonprofit programs that provide shelter, food and other services in the Omaha area. Donors also can direct gifts to another flood-impacted community.
The Nebraska Farm Bureau: A disaster relief fund has been launched the Agriculture Disaster Exchange portal to connect farmers, ranchers and agricultural communities with help. Donate at www.nefb.org/disaster.
Hy-Vee: Hy-Vee announced fund raising efforts to benefit the American Red Cross of Nebraska and Southwest Iowa. Hy-vee customers can donate any amount at the register or customer service counter to help with flood relief efforts. Hy-Vee will then match consumer donations up to $50,000.
Salvation Army: You can make monetary flood relief donations through the Nebraska, South Dakota and Western Iowa chapter of the Salvation Army here.
Catholic Social Services: Catholic Social Services of Southern Nebraska is accepting monetary donations to assist those affected by ongoing flood/storm damage in Nebraska. Checks may be mailed to them at their administrative offices (2241 O St. Lincoln NE 68510) OR via their website. If donating by check, be sure to list “flood relief” in your check memo. If donating online, designate “flood relief” in the “specific designation for your gift” field.
Grand Island Community Foundation: The Grand Island Community Foundation has established a Disaster Relief Fund for Central Nebraska. Funds will be available for the local area to assist with relief related to the disastrous flooding seen in the Central Nebraska area. Those wishing to contribute to the fund can do that at www.gicf.org. GICF will be in contact with local communities to distribute the funds.
Kearney Area Community Foundation: The Kearney Area Community Foundation has a Disaster Relief Fund set up to help those in the Kearney area suffering loss from the recent devastating flooding. To show your support, click the link below to donate to the Disaster Relief Fund. All donations will stay in the Kearney area. https://www.kearneyfoundation.org/donate
United Methodist Committee on Relief: 100% of all funds go towards the Nebraska floods if you use the code #975/420101.
Custer County Foundation: https://www.custercountyfounda…
Merrick Foundation: Choose Merrick County Disaster Relief as the designated fund here.
Nebraska Cattlemen Disaster Relief Fund: http://nebraskacattlemen.org/disaster-relief-fund/
Wood River:The Wood River Fire Station is in need of volunteers to help clean. People should come with boots, gloves, hand tools, rakes and buckets. If you’re interested call 308−583−2541.
Village of Dannebrog: Dannebrog is also in need of volunteers to help clean up downtown and around the town. If you’re interested you can contact them on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/dannebrogne/
Register for Federal Aid (FEMA)
*Who can register?
Homeowners and renters in the counties of Butler, Cass, Colfax, Dodge, Douglas, Nemaha, Sarpy, Saunders, and Washington are eligible to apply for federal disaster assistance. Additional counties may be added as assessments are completed and submitted to FEMA.
*What do I need?
Be ready to register. When calling the FEMA number, be prepared to provide your current address, the address of the damaged property, contact information where FEMA can reach you, social security number, the makeup of your household (occupants), insurance and income information.
*How do I register?
The process is free, take about 20 minutes:
o Register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov (this will be the quickest option).
o Register by phone using FEMA’s toll-free registration line by calling 800−621− 3362. If you use TTY, call 800−462−7585 or use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) to call 800−621−3362. Telephone registration is available 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.
Photos by Nati Harnik / AP
Nebraska State Patrol
Kent Sievers, Omaha World-Herald