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FEMA representatives share rebuilding resources in Breathitt County

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Posted at 7:00 PM, Sep 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-01 19:40:39-04

BREATHITT COUNTY, Ky. (LEX18) — Residents in Breathitt County are still recovering from the physical and emotional effects of this summer's floods. Today, one resident, Constance Warren, whose daughter and family lost everything, says she's happy agencies are still here to help.

Warren says, "I'm glad that they're here to help -- because I wanna put my baby's name out there if it helps in any way. It's Destiny Bright Everest -- and the Bright and Everest family keep them in your prayers because this is a great community, and we do all come together."

FEMA agents have been doing door-to-door outreach in this community and are continuing the work here.

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One FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance representative, Kejuan Johnson, says, "What I can do here actually, I can look you up in the system and tell you what's going on and if you need a status check or an update or anything, phone numbers addresses and things of that nature."

Today, one Breathitt County FEMA Community Education and Outreach Specialist's role is helping residents transition from their present to their future by educating them on things like mold, mildew, and home elevation -- to prevent future damage and save lives.

That specialist, Carolyn Hodges, says, "We talk about rebuilding safer and stronger, about elevating different things, even the mobile home, appliances. We try to get them out of the way of the flood."

FEMA representatives Ace Hardware say that they've been able to help as many as 80 people per day for the last 30 days. Now, they'll be at this shop for the next week, handing out valuable information and letting residents know how they can build back stronger

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Hodges says, "Even if the home is demolished, we have a buyout program, where they actually get with the building officials here in Breathitt County and if they don't want to go back to their location, they might be able to sell their home."

Although Warren knows not everyone has gotten access to FEMA assistance, the life-long Breathitt County resident says continuing to show up means everything.

"Showing up means a whole lot. I mean I'm grateful either way. Just a little help or a lot, you know, whatever they can do for us," says Warren.