When disaster strikes, volunteers respond

Following the 2008 flood, individuals volunteered approximately 564,552 hours to help clean up and rebuild the community. We need volunteers in disaster situations like the flood.

When a disaster strikes, emergency management and nonprofit organizations respond. The Linn Area Partners Active in Disaster (LAP-AID) is the community organization that activates when a disaster takes place in Linn County.

United Way of East Central Iowa currently leads the Volunteer Coordination team by managing and engaging volunteers to respond to disaster. Through this team effort, United Way works to maximize human resources in preparation, response, and recovery.

Volunteers are trained annually to set up and manage an Emergency Volunteer Center (EVC). When a disaster strikes, this team will manage the unaffiliated volunteers that often respond to disasters. EVC trainings are held in the fall and winter with an annual activation taking place in the spring. If you are interested in becoming an EVC volunteer, learn more here.

Visit the Linn Area Partners Active in Disaster website

2016 Flood Stories

“A father and son received sandbags from our station. As they finished loading up, I heard the dad say to the son, “How many bags do you thing we have in the truck? About 30? We need to fill at least 60 before we leave to pay back what we got.”

It was such a shining example of people helping people, even when those people were the ones who needed help.”

—Sheryl C.

“I wanted to help with flood efforts, even though we didn’t experience flooding in our residence. Since our children didn’t have school for the week, we wanted to show them how we could help our community since we were not directly affected.

Each day, we helped different walks of life. Our children made a comment about how good they felt after helping all of these people.”

—Kristina C.

“After taking 13 hauls of sandbags, the final house I visited belonged to a single mother. Since she couldn’t find a babysitter, she wasn’t able to go out to get sandbags. I pulled up to her house, and asked if she needed help. She came out to my truck, and was so thankful.

Knowing that my actions had such a positive reaction for someone made all of the time, sweat, pain, and tears worth it.”

—Amanda T.