Victoria County Long Term Recovery Group logo

The Victoria County Long-Term Recovery Group unveiled a redesigned logo at its March 23 group meeting.

An 82-year-old Yorktown woman wrote a letter to the Victoria County Long-Term Recovery Group after reading in the newspaper about how the group continues to help after Hurricane Harvey.

Development Coordinator Rick Villa read the letter aloud at the group’s monthly meeting was Friday at the Catholic Diocese of Victoria chancery offices.

“God bless you and pray that more money will come your way to help families,” she wrote, including a $10 check.

“It’s not the dollar amount,” Villa said. “It’s just the fact that everyone in this room is doing all the efforts possible to help toward Hurricane Harvey recovery and assist the public in need. It’s a statement that people care, you know?”

Disaster case managers with four organizations continue to help survivors through the recovery process and are directing homeowners to apply for the federal Homeowner Assistance Program.

The group’s unmet needs committee, which meets weekly, has provided more than $1.5 million in assistance for 378 cases since the disaster.

“This shows that there is still quite a bit of need out there,” said Chairman Mark Longoria, a pastor at Faith Family Church.

Region 3 Education Service Center reported that the agency made contact with 4,181 individuals in Victoria to provide crisis counseling during a nine-month period that ended Oct. 31.

Recovery workers expressed concern about what families will do if they are unable to secure a permanent housing plan by the time the temporary direct housing assistance program ends in February.

In Bloomington and the surrounding areas, the Mennonite Disaster Services is helping three more families move into new homes by Christmas.

The group discussed plans to find funding for a warehouse space that would be used by the long-term recovery group after disasters and the need to train current disaster case managers to be ready to respond in the case of future disasters.

Villa said the long-term recovery group still needs volunteers and is seeking help getting a forklift, an enclosed trailer and an open trailer to continue helping families rebuild.

The group will have a float at the city’s Lighted Christmas Parade on Saturday and is joining the Victoria Chamber of Commerce, he said.

The long-term recovery group’s next meeting is scheduled for Jan. 25.

Laura Garcia is the Features Editor for the Victoria Advocate. She may be reached at lgarcia@vicad.com or 361-580-6585.

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Features Editor

Laura has covered health and nonprofits in the Crossroads since 2014. She's also mom to a toddler, loves journalism conferences and is a big fan of sci-fi and crime TV.

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