The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA still has boots on the ground and on the job despite the government shutdown. Most disaster response workers are paid through separate emergency funds and not affected by the Beltway meltdown. I tagged along with two FEMA workers in Green Mountain Falls on Tuesday.
Alexandria Mclukin and Caleb Donath were spreading the word about applying for help if you are flood survivor. The pair was going door to door and stumbled on Paul Montesano who was doing home work on another homeowner's property. Paul didn't even know that he qualified for help because his van had intense mud and water damage from the recent flooding, "If all the help works out, that would be great. I had no idea there was any kind of help for this kind of thing." Alexandria and Caleb clued him in on the toll free and online help and even offered to register him while they were talking with him.
Alexandria has been with FEMA since 2008. She told me she's proud that she's part of FEMA and helping residents like Paul, "With all the stress that is going on around them and with this government shutdown, for the residents to see us boots on the ground and helping them, it gives them some ease."
Caleb is with FEMA Corps. This organization is part of joint partnership between FEMA and AmericaCorps to get 18-24 year olds interested in emergency management work. Caleb told me that he's glad to be here in Colorado, "It's what I signed up to do, help people to get them registered."