Team Rubicon, a national nonprofit organization aimed at using disaster response as a means to reintegrate American military veterans back into civilian life, is on the ground in the region to help with flooding recovery efforts.
As they help begin clean-up efforts, county officials are asking people to not begin damage repairs until the volunteers have come through.
According to Walla Walla County Emergency Management, Team Rubicon is in Umatilla, Walla Walla and Columbia counties with their priority being damage assessment. Once the assessment is complete more intense recovery work will begin.
In the meantime, Emergency Management requests that people do not begin clean-up efforts until Team Rubicon members are on scene. The team will keep track of all clean-up efforts to report it to the federal government.
Officials ask that if people feel the need to clean up right now then be absolutely sure to keep receipts of expenses, take photos of damage before cleaning up and make sure no people are in the photos.
The receipts and photos will be used for documentation to help build a case for FEMA disaster declaration which could release additional federal funding to the area.
Team Rubicon will work with Emergency Management to assist with “spontaneous volunteer coordination.” The goal is to connect the many local volunteers with Team Rubicon during their stint here.
You can find more information about Team Rubicon at their website: teamrubiconusa.org.