Tazewell County Tornado Response
Following the November 17, 2013 tornadoes, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency requested support with volunteer coordination from the AmeriCorps St. Louis Emergency Response Team. On November 19, 2013, a team of 7 was deployed to support the Tazewell County emergency management at the Tremont Emergency Operations Center. The Tazewell County emergency management officially requested the help of AmeriCorps St. Louis on November 20th and by November 21st, AmeriCorps St. Louis had established a Volunteer Reception Center at Illinois Central College in the Cougar Plex and was accepting volunteers. The team provided volunteer coordination support at the Tremont and Washington Emergency Operations Center.
At the Volunteer Reception Center, the Emergency Response Team provided volunteer management for spontaneous, unaffiliated volunteers and the associated hotlines. The Emergency Response Team coordinated over 2,000 volunteers through the Volunteer Reception Center.
Over Thanksgiving weekend in 2013, the 7 person team added an additional 8 members to volunteer in Washington. With the added Corps member force, we were able to add additional volunteer management in the field, helping sort out debris from the storm. After serving a 1/2 day on Thanksgiving morning, AmeriCorps St. Louis members were welcomed into the home of two volunteers for a Thanksgiving feast.