ORLANDO, Fla. – Hurricane Ian has damaged homes across Central Florida, forced hundreds of people into shelters and the full extent of the damage really won’t be known for some time.
Groups are coming together to help storm victims. Here are places offering assistance right now. We will update this list as we get more information.
Disaster Distress Helpline - 1-800-985-5990
The Disaster Distress Helpline is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year hotline offering counseling and support for people dealing with emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters. The hotline is multilingual and confidential.
FEMA is offering individual assistance in the following Central Florida counties as of now: Flagler, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Polk, Seminole and Volusia.
To apply for assistance, go to DisasterAssistance.gov, or call 800-621-FEMA (3362).
American Red Cross
If you need a place to stay, contact the American Red Cross at 800-RED-CROSS (733-2767), or find an open shelter at RedCross.org.
Heart of Florida United Way
Heart of Florida United Way is available to connect people to resources, including supplies, food, clothing and hygiene locations, etc. To connect to United Way’s call centers, dial 211.
You can also check out hurricane resources on the United Way website.
Second Harvest Food Bank
Need help cleaning up your property after Hurricane Ian? Crisis Cleanup helps deploy volunteers who can help. Call 1-800-451-1954, or go to CrisisCleanup.org.
The Sharing Center
The Sharing Center provides a food pantry, showers and laundry. 600 N. 17-92, Longwood. Call 407-260-9155.
Harvest Time International
Harvest Time is distributing food, water and supplies in Sanford, at 225 Harvest Time Drive, Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Northland Church is asking residents to fill out a form on the church website. They will deploy teams once the roads are safe. You can also call their Disaster Response line at 407-949-4005.
The Bridge Center, DeLand
The Bridge Center at 421 S. Palmetto Ave. in DeLand is providing hot lunches and dinners to anyone who needs it.
UHaul is offering 30 days of free storage and U-Box container usage at 43 locations across Florida, including the following Central Florida locations:
- U-Haul Center of Kissimmee St. Cloud - 2629 E. Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy.
- U-Haul Moving & Storage of Lakeland - 2525 U.S. Hwy. 98 N
- U-Haul Storage of Lakeland - 1621 N. Florida Ave.
- U-Haul Moving & Storage at Maitland Blvd. - 7803 N. Orange Blossom Trail
- U-Haul Moving & Storage at Lake Mary Blvd. - 3851 S. Orlando Drive, Sanford
- U-Haul Moving & Storage of Sanford - 3101 S. Orlando Drive, Sanford
American Bar Association
Free legal hlp available for people in the affected areas who need help with issues like FEMA benefits, home repair contracts, property insurance claims, and landlord or tenant problems.
Call 1-866-550-2929 or go to the American Bar website.
Government phone numbers
FLORIDA DEPT. OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT: 1-850-815-4000
FLAGLER COUNTY: 800-451-1954
Orange County: 311
Volusia County: 866-345-0345
Phone and internet services
AT&T customers will waive talk, text and data overage charges for customers in impacted areas through Oct. 28.
Comcast is making its network of public Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the state free for anyone to use, including non-Xfinity customers. Details on how to find and use a WiFi hotspot, check the Comcast website.
Spectrum is opening Out-of-Home WiFi access points to all. Indoor and outdoor WiFi spots can be found at locations across Central Florida. Head to the Spectrum website to find one near you.