An edition of: WaterAtlas.orgPresented By: Sarasota County, USF Water Institute

Water-Related News

Sarasota County seeks to strengthen volunteer base as hurricane season continues

News Image

SARASOTA COUNTY – Sarasota County Health and Human Services is continuing to recruit a team of volunteers to manage and run Volunteer Reception Centers (VRCs) during a time of disaster. The VRCs are community locations where people who step forward to help during a time of disaster register and get their volunteer duty assignments. This is part of Sarasota County’s effort to strengthen the volunteer base for the hurricane season which continues through the end of November.

Those interested in volunteering can attend a VRC Recruitment and Training Workshop. The training will occur on Friday, July 29 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Morgan Family Community Center, 6207 W. Price Boulevard in North Port. Participants will gain “hands on” practice in setting up and running a Volunteer Reception Center.

Officials say it is a challenge to register everyone who volunteers following a disaster. Sarasota County has adopted VRCs as a best-practice model to help ensure volunteers work in meaningful and constructive roles during the disaster response and recovery process.

“We look forward to strengthening our community’s capabilities in placing volunteers during a time of disaster,” said William Freitas, Human Services Strategic Planner. “This training workshop provides disaster volunteers an opportunity to practice the process while training new volunteers who will serve on the Volunteer Reception Center Team.”

“The VRC would open at the direction of officials after the ‘all clear’ notice has been given,” says Sarasota County Emergency Management Chief Ed McCrane.

To reserve your place at the workshop, visit or call Mindi Rohan, Project Consultant at 941-313-5821 for more information.

Those who are unable to attend the training session can register to become a HS-Disaster Recovery Team member through

Information is also available at the Welcome Center at Sarasota County Administration Center, 1660 Ringling Blvd. in Sarasota.