AmeriCorps, Senior Corps Helping Texas Town’s Recovery

Apr 22, 2013

Washington, D.C. – The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) is deploying AmeriCorps and Senior Corps resources to help residents of West, Texas recover and rebuild after last week’s explosion.

20 AmeriCorps members serving with American YouthWorks, a division of the Texas Conservation Corps have deployed to the region. These members have established a Volunteer Reception Center and are coordinating volunteers, conducting needs assessments and managing work orders. Additional AmeriCorps VISTA members are assisting local authorities and Baylor University to gather needed supplies on campus and deliver them to a distribution center.

Under the strong leadership of the local RSVP program, Heart of Texas RSVP, 66 Senior Corps volunteers from West and the neighboring towns have been serving at the Senior Center and Volunteer Reception Center.

“Many Senior Corps and AmeriCorps participants are part of the West, Texas, community and we stand with them as they and their neighbors recover from this explosion,” said Kelly DeGraff, director of the Disaster Services Unit at CNCS. “Our collaboration with leaders at all levels will help these families receive the services and assistance they need in an incredibly difficult time.”

CNCS is also working in close coordination with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, the American Red Cross, and state and local authorities. CNCS is part of a local, state and nationally-coordinated effort and has activated national service participants to assist in the recovery.

Additional examples of national service teams responding include:

  • Senior Corps volunteers with RSVP have resumed delivery of food to homebound individuals with Meals on Wheels thanks to a temporary partnership with a local grocery store
  • Senior Corps volunteers are staffing the Senior Center in West which is currently operating a full-scale 2-1-1 call center, food distribution headquarters, and media command post.
  • RSVP volunteers are providing assistance at the Waco fairgrounds, the staging area for donations.

Media Contact

Samantha Jo Warfield
(202) 606-6775

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