‘Please help’: Duval residents impacted by Nicole seek individual assistance from FEMA

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — President Joe Biden has declared Hurricane Nicole a disaster, opening up millions in federal aid to impacted counties.


Related Story: Hurricane Nicole: Putnam, St. Johns eligible for FEMA Individual Assistance

While people who suffered property damage in counties like St. Johns are eligible for individual help, that’s not the case for Duval.

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Sharonda Wilson lives along the Trout River in Duval County. Since Hurricane Nicole, she’s been waiting for individual assistance.

“I am seeking help,” Wilson said. “I need to know what steps to take.”

She was feeling hopeful when learning that Nicole was declared a disaster.

“I got excited only to go online and find that Duval was not listed,” Wilson said.

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She’s talking about individual assistance that counties like St. Johns and Putnam are now eligible for.

In Duval County, certain entities are eligible for public assistance but not individual homeowners or renters.

The public help provides for emergency work, replacement of disaster-damaged facilities and money toward issues like beach erosion.

“It is very frustrating considering St. Johns is just a skip away,” Wilson said.

CLICK HERE to learn about the factors that go into determining eligibility for individual assistance.

Wilson said the help she and her neighbors are seeking is urgent.

“I just need them to exhaust every effort that they need to do -- whatever it is that they have to do to assess our area so that we can at least be considered for individual assistance,” Wilson said.

On Thursday FEMA announced that additional assistance has been made available to supplement state, tribal and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by Hurricane Nicole during the period of Nov. 7-30, 2022. Assistance for Category G costs, specifically for damaged engineered beaches and the costs to restore them, is also being made available to the state of Florida.

“Please help,” Wilson said.

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Affected survivors can apply for disaster assistance HERE, by calling 800-621-3362 or by using the FEMA mobile app.

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