Local Resident Answers Call To Service In FEMA Corps

DENVER — Ariella Amerine, of Farmington, Ark., recently began a 10-month term of national service in FEMA Corps, an AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) program. FEMA Corps provides a boost to the nation’s ability to assist disaster survivors while expanding career opportunities for young people ages 18 to 24. Based out of the Southwest Region campus in Denver, Amerine began her first project the week of March 24.

During her 10-month term of service, Amerine, 21, will assist citizens and communities that have been impacted by disasters, as well as provide administrative and logistical support to the nation’s emergency management system. Since the program launched in Fall 2012, FEMA Corps has assisted with a variety of declared disasters, including Hurricane Sandy, 2013’s historic flooding in Colorado, severe storms in Minnesota, tornadoes in Oklahoma, the fertilizer plant explosion in West Texas, and coordinating humanitarian aid during last year’s influx of unaccompanied children along the southern U.S. border, among many others.

Serving on teams of 10 to 12 people, FEMA Corps members both travel to disaster-affected communities and support longer-term recovery operations across the country. Projects range from helping disaster survivors apply for FEMA assistance to mapping of disaster-stricken areas to sharing disaster preparedness and mitigation information with the public.

Amerine arrived at the AmeriCorps NCCC Southwest Region campus on Feb. 9 and completed four weeks of specialized training in teamwork, leadership development, communication, service learning, and in disaster recovery. Amerine will serve on several projects in various locations throughout the United States depending on where a disaster strikes.

Prior to joining FEMA Corps, Amerine graduated from Farmington High School in 2012 and attended University of Arkansas studying Psychology. Amerine said, “I want to give back to society in some great way. This program seemed like a good first step in getting my foot in the door to a life dedicated to helping others and bettering the world.” Ariella is the daughter of Jeff and Phyllis Amerine.

After completing 1,700 hours of service, FEMA Corps members will receive a $5,730 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award to pay for tuition or student loans. FEMA Corps operates out of five regional NCCC campuses: Sacramento, Calif.; Denver, Colo.; Vinton, Iowa; Baltimore, Md.; and, Vicksburg, Miss., but deploys teams nationally wherever the disaster-related need is the greatest. Applications will be accepted through Oct. 1, 2015, for those who would like to serve in FEMA Corps beginning in early 2016. For more information about FEMA Corps or AmeriCorps NCCC, or to apply online, visit www.nationalservice.gov.

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