Kentucky website helps people affected by tornadoes; The “success” Christmas toy drive

FRANKFORT, KY (WOWK) – Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear is expected to give a Kentucky team press briefing on COVID-19 and the deadly tornadoes that ravaged the western part of the state earlier this month.

On Wednesday, December 22, the governor’s office announced a new website to help those affected by the tornadoes and inclement weather that struck on the night of Friday, December 10 and the morning of Saturday, December 11, find the help they need. need. .

Beshear’s office says the website lists information on several state government assistance programs as well as information on how to apply for unemployment, health care coverage, food assistance, housing. long term and even a replacement driver’s license. The website also has information on how to submit a FEMA claim and where to find temporary searches such as temporary shelter, hot meals, and hotlines.

According to the governor, at least 11,400 validated registrants have signed up for assistance and 11,600 insurance claims have been filed.

State officials are urging those in need of assistance in counties approved for disaster funding to apply on, by calling 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585, or by downloading the FEMA application.

The state also launched the Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund for those affected. Those wishing to donate to this fund can visit Beshear says the state will work to ensure that these funds are available to help Kentuckians recover from the disaster in the long term.

The governor said the Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund has already received more than $ 30 million in donations and will be used to cover expenses not covered by FEMA. Beshear also says the Fund also helped pay for 39 funerals for tornado victims.

“This fund is for the long term. We have a lot of great organizations on the ground, and they’ll need to be on the ground in other places immediately after. But rebuilding these homes, structures and lives is going to take years, and we have to make sure that when support is needed on the road, it’s there and we can deploy it quickly to help these families, ”Besehar said.

Beshear also says the state has yet to get Disaster SNAP’s benefits approved, but adds that the process is moving faster than they have “ever seen.” Beshear says more information about the food aid programs is available on the new website.

Kentucky First Lady Britainy Beshear said the Western Kentucky team’s Christmas toy drive was a success and there were more than enough gifts for all the families who asked for help. aid. The first lady says she is grateful to the volunteers who made the distribution of the toys possible.

“The true value of this initiative cannot be measured in dollars,” said the first lady. “Thanks to you, we contacted all the families who contacted us before the end of the toy drive to ask Santa for some extra help this year. We even helped other families on Christmas Eve even after the trip was over. None of this would have been possible without the tireless work of our volunteers. From the bottom of my heart, I would like to thank all of our volunteers.

She also says that due to the overwhelming generosity that has made the toy drive a success, there are enough gifts and donations left from the toy drive to help families deliver birthday presents to their children.

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