EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) – Thursday now marks more than three weeks since the murder North Weinbach Avenue explosion. Many organizations were on site to respond to the needs of the injured and displaced.
In the aftermath of the explosion, the Emergency Management Agency contacted community organizations in southwestern Indiana active in disasters to activate their services. Theo Boots is a member of the Southwest Indiana Board of Directors.
Boots says it is the first disaster the organization has responded to since restoring services in 2019.
“COAD’s goal is to be already organized and to already know which agency is going to help in which areas are needed,” Boots said.
Southwest Indiana COAD is an assembly of organizations such as the American Red Cross, Catholic Charities, Goodwill, and the Deaconess Health System. Boots says the organization is committed to providing victims with the necessities.
“We didn’t have any unmet needs that anyone around this table couldn’t address,” Boots said.
Kelly Schneider, vice president of COAD Southwest Indiana and CEO of Easterseals Rehabilitation Center, says the organization only responds to disasters after they are activated by the EMA. Schneider says that once they are contacted by the EMA, COAD takes care of managing the volunteers and the resources.
She also says that COAD is able to serve those affected by disasters in the short and long term.
“For my role at Easterseales, if anyone needed help with disabled services or equipment – disabled equipment, a wheelchair damaged in a disaster – we would be able to step in and help. ‘trying to help with that, but even things like animal control,’” Schneider said. “It’s really a wide range of people who can help in different ways.”
The Southwest Indiana COAD serves Vanderburgh, Warrick Gibson, Posey, and Spencer counties and the assembly meets quarterly. Members say they are open to accepting organizations and individuals interested in joining the team.
Are you an organization or individual interested in joining COAD Southwest Indiana?
If so, contact Theo Boots at [email protected]
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