Help for People with Visual and Other Disabilities Who Experience Catatrophic Events

Date Posted: 11/03/2017

For individuals recovering from recent natural disasters, there are some financial assistance programs available to help with assistive technology and equipment as well as care of dog guides.

FEMA Assistance

FEMA has established disability integration efforts for persons with disabilities with unmet needs related to a disaster. The contact person is Julia "Juli" Gallup. She can be reached at 202-436-5914 or

More information is available on the FEMA website.

Help for Guide Dog Users

Guide Dog Users, Inc, Disaster Assistance and Preparedness Program (DAPP) is available for any guide dog user who needs financial assistance to care for their working guide dog during recovery from a catastrophic event such as a hurricane, a fire emergency or other disaster. If you need help, call 866-799-8436 to apply. If you can’t call yourself, a friend or family member or emergency worker can call on your behalf. You can check the resource section of the Guide Dog Users Inc. website for more information about the DAPP.

Those who need additional assistance should also call the school that provided their guide dog. There are often ways the school can help with funding for medical emergencies and other assistance to replace damaged or lost equipment. Other guide dog handlers are also often glad to help with places to stay, dog sitting, and other assistance.

Lessons Learned from Hurricane Irma

You might want to check out this post on Lessons Learned from Hurricane Irma by Empish Thomas, VisionAware peer advisor.

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