- Chris Schoeder, Nebraska Emergency Management Agency
- Dr. Denise Bulling, University of Nebraska Public Policy Center
- Jeff Weaver, Sarpy Disaster Recovery
- Jason Feldhaus, Nebraska Children and Family Foundation
For this week’s session, our panelists discussed Long Term Emergency Management, focusing on emergency recovery from the 2019 floods and the current pandemic response. Each panelist was an integral part of the state and local response to the 2019 floods, and their work continues as new issues appear and as philanthropic and federal aid enters their communities.
Dr. Denise Bulling spoke of the impact on the mental health of local communities. Denise worked with Nebraska Strong in order to provide crisis counselors during the 2019 floods and continues her work across the country. Crisis counselors went door to door during the floods, and their services are still available today at the Nebraska Strong Recovery Project.
Jeff Weaver told of how he became a part of Sarpy Disaster Recovery in response to the flood, how the group acts as a partner with the community to provide case management for those affected. Sarpy County had more than 1,000 households displaced by the floods and it is the goal of the recovery group to help them thrive, not just survive, the disaster.
Jason Feldhaus explained the role of connected youth initiative communities in disaster recovery and how helping families recover outside of disasters has grown into a much larger and impactful service. They are helping families who were impacted by the floods and COVID reach their full potential. Jason stressed the need to increase the capacity for aid infrastructure within local, state, federal, and philanthropic partners to better handle intervention and resiliency.