Maui News

AmeriCorps Members Deploy to Hawai‘i for Disaster Response

June 18, 2018, 11:32 AM HST
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Emergency operations center on Hawaiʻi Island. PC: May 23, 2018 courtesy Office of Governor David Ige

Three teams of AmeriCorps members have been deployed to Hawaiʻi to join assistance efforts for evacuees of the ongoing Kīlauea volcanic eruption.

A total of 20 AmeriCorps members from FEMA Corps departed for the island on Saturday from Jackson, Miss.

Immediately upon arrival, the AmeriCorps members began work to ensure that evacuees receive timely and accurate information about the resources and assistance available to them. By conducting mobile needs-assessments with survivors, the teams will provide on-site registration and referrals to federal and local assistance, or other service providers as needed. Their on-the-ground surveys are designed to deliver a consistent flow of survivor and community information to FEMA to address survivor needs and concerns.

“The people of Puna impacted by the ongoing Kīlauea eruption need the collective effort of the community and every resource that the county, state, and federal government can provide. While the sight of Madam Pele at work has captivated the international community, we must focus on the families who have lost everything and are struggling to recover and rebuild,” said Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa. “The 20 AmeriCorps members from FEMA Corps who are deploying in Puna are critical to keeping the flow of information consistent and up to date. They will help with needs assessments and registration to help FEMA focus their efforts. We are grateful for their assistance.”

The 20 young people all serve through FEMA Corps, a unit of AmeriCorps NCCC. They were previously deployed to Puerto Rico to support Hurricane Maria recovery efforts. A unit of AmeriCorps NCCC, FEMA Corps is an innovative partnership between the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Corporation for National and Community Service, the federal agency that administers AmeriCorps, to enhance the nation’s disaster response and recovery capacity, while expanding career opportunities for young people.


Following a disaster, national service acts as a force multiplier, providing key resources and significantly expanding the capacity of existing organizations on the ground. In the last year, CNCS has deployed more than 4,000 AmeriCorps and Senior Corps members to areas impacted by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. From forest fires and floods, to hurricanes and tornadoes, to terror attacks and oil spills, participants in CNCS programs have provided critical support to millions of Americans affected by disasters since 1994.


The Corporation for National and Community Service is the federal agency for volunteering, service, and civic engagement. The agency engages millions of Americans in citizen service through its AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs and leads the nation’s volunteering and service efforts.

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