How small businesses can recover from Hurricane Sandy and other natural disasters

By Amy Anderson

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, Nov. 8 2012 8:00 a.m. MST

Crisis Counseling Assistance: Counseling services are available through the Crisis Counseling and Assistance and Training Program. This assistance is paid for by FEMA in areas that the president has declared a major disaster area. There are immediate grants to cover up to 60 days of counseling after the disaster, and grants can cover up to nine full months following a disaster. The stress of going through a disaster is not something to be taken lightly, and counseling assistance can be a substantial help to take advantage of during this difficult time. Additional information on this program can be found at www.fema.gov.

Free Legal Services: There are free legal services available for your business through FEMA for areas the president declares a disaster to help provide you legal assistance with filing insurance claims, landlord issues, etc. Additional information on this can be found at www.fema.gov and www.disasterlegalaid.org.

Online Questionnaire and Application For Assistance: Business owners can fill out an online questionnaire to see which types of assistance you qualify for, and fill in an online application by going to www.disasterassistance.gov.

Instructions on Cleaning Up after a Hurricane: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has provided instructions on cleaning up your office after a hurricane, such as how to remove drywall, clean surfaces, etc. This can be found at www.bt.cdc.gov.

Precautions to Take Returning to Your Office: The Center for Disease Control and Preventio also provides information on safety precautions to consider upon return to your office. This can be found at www.bt.cdc.gov.

Tips on Recovering from a Hurricane: The Environmental Protection Agency has given tips on recovering from a hurricane at www.epa.gov.

Hopefully this information will prove valuable to some as they begin their efforts to recover from Hurricane Sandy and other disasters that may occur in the future. I am personally happy to know these types of resources exist for entrepreneurs and small businesses because every little bit will help. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of you during this difficult time of recovery.

Send me a message on Twitter @amyreesanderson if there are other items you could use help with regarding finding assistance available to you.

Amy Rees Anderson is the Founder and Managing Partner of REES Capital, a Mentoring and Angel Investing Firm. Contact her at amy@reescapital.com or follow her daily blog at www.amyreesanderson.com/blog

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