The group that will be focusing on long-term recovery efforts on Saipan after Typhoon Soudelor has been named “CNMI Care: Commonwealth Advocates for Recovery Efforts.”
Various non-government, non-profit, faith-based organizations and foundations as well as private companies approved the name at a meeting yesterday at the Office of the Governor’s conference room.
CNMI Care’s mission statement states: “Our mission is to build a resilient community and to identify, facilitate, and deliver resources and long-term support to address the unmet needs of individuals and families impacted by disaster.”
“We’re doing extremely well, we’ve got a great team going,” interim facilitator Gerri Willis said.
Matthew Deleon Guerrero, chief of staff of Lt. Gov. Ralph DLG Torres, and Michael Kern, Federal Emergency Management Agency-Pacific Area Office voluntary agency liaison, were also at the meeting.
Kern talked about collating the data from organizations such as each groups’ description of disaster services, number of volunteers, total volunteer hours and donated items.
The group also created committees for communications and resource development, donations and volunteer management, workforce recovery and construction management, spiritual and emotional care, and disaster case management.
“Each group, they’re coming up with committee chairs and in a couple weeks we’ll meet again and have a report,” Willis said.
Among those who joined the donations and volunteer management are United4Saipan, Empty Vessel Ministry, and Best Sunshine International, Ltd. The American Red Cross and Karidat are among those who joined the disaster case management, while Tan Holdings will be under the workforce recovery and construction management.
“That’s what really what the Red Cross focuses on, case management,” said John Hirsh, Red Cross-NMI chapter executive director. “We meet with this client, each head of household, we talk about what type of damage they have, how many they are in the family.”
Tan Holdings vice president Alex Sablan said the corporation is helping to generate a fundraising effort through TSL Foundation.
“That’s going to go toward helping with purchasing auxiliary items,” he added.
Sablan said that, through the committee, the funds that they will raise will be properly channeled.
CNMI Care is also working on establishing officers and is discussing having an executive board.
Willis will facilitate the group while it doesn’t have leaders yet, but she expressed that she won’t be leading the group herself.
“There are so many people that are involved in so many activities and they know disaster from the very beginning,” Willis said.