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Earthquakes in Haiti and Chile Cause Vast Destruction
On the evening of January 12, 2010, a major 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti. It is the most powerful quake to hit the impoverished country in more than 200 years. The tremor struck 15km (10 miles) south-west of the capital Port-au-Prince, and was quickly followed by two strong aftershocks of 5.9 and 5.5 magnitude. Reports describe the destruction to affect as much as 70 percent of the buildings, with debris filling the roads making emergency response difficult.
On February 27, 2010, an earthquake with a magnitude of 8.8 was recorded off the central Chilean coast. Strong tremors were felt throughout Chile, including Santiago. The February 27 earthquake caused significant damage to the areas closest to the epicenter.
The international community has been deeply saddened by the reports and images of human suffering resulting from these devastating earthquakes. For residents of New Jersey with family, friends and other close ties to people in these countries, this is an extremely difficult and challenging time.
NJ 2-1-1 Provides Credible Information on Available Federal, State and Local Resources
NJ 2-1-1 has created a Relief and Recovery Assistance Guide in an effort to provide New Jersey residents with a credible resource to give or get help for people in need. The Guide will be updated regularly as new resources and services become available. Check back often to see the latest information about state and local resources that may be of help to you.
The Guide and the Web pages associated with it list information on many programs and agencies. It begins with a description of the programs and services that are available through the federal and state government as well as service organizations, and continues with listings of local resources. Contact information and links are provided as well. The Guide can be translated into many different languages by clicking on the translation tool at the top of any Web page, choosing the language you prefer, and then opening the PDF version of the Guide that is available through a link at the upper right hand corner of our Earthquake Assistance Web pages. We are attempting to translate the site into Creole and will post a copy as soon as it is available.
Emotional support for people affected by disasters or other overwhelming events is available by calling New Jersey Mental Health Cares' Disaster Mental Health Helpline (877) 294-HELP (4357), where experienced crisis counselors can be reached. To assist callers who are deaf or who have a hearing impairment a TTY line is also available at (877) 294-4356.
FEMA ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS
Since both disasters occurred outside of the US, there are no current FEMA programs available to help offset the costs associated with helping relatives who live in either Haiti or Chile. The FEMA Web site is a good source for current information about the events and what is being done to help those affected.
The New Jersey Department of Human Services (DHS) Office of Refugee and Immigrant Services is the lead agency for repatriation, refugee services and emergency sheltering with assistance from the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management and the Department of Health and Senior Services.
NJ 2-1-1 staff has been well-trained to answer questions related to the resources available in our state that were established to help you.
Need Help? – Dial 2-1-1
You are encouraged to dial "2-1-1" 24 hours a day, seven days a week if you need help in understanding and finding available assistance services. Language translation and TTY services are offered to any caller. You can also visit www.nj211.org to review the Latest News for You section, search the database of services in your local community, or chat live with an experienced community resource specialist. 2-1-1 will help identify with you the best local resources to fit your individual needs during times of distress or for life's everyday concerns.
If you know of additional resources that would be appropriate to include in this section, please let us know by contacting us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Page last modified on 4.2.10