A group of Iowans will leave this weekend for Florida. The trained crisis-response team will apply the training they have in helping trauma victims to the people facing a long cleanup job after a string of late-summer hurricanes devastated their state. Spokesman Bob Brammer in the Iowa Attorney General’s office says they’ve trained through the Victim Assistance program. He says usually they respond to smaller incidents, in-state events like a murder in a school, something that affects the community. While this is a natural disaster, Brammer says the same kinds of skills and techniques apply. Ordinary citizens are kind of shell-shocked, as one Iowan there earlier said people are distraught, and Brammer adds that they’ll also help the stressed-out caregivers, the first responders. From Red Cross to FEMA and other agencies, those workers have borne a load responding to the disaster and the Iowans also will offer them help. Their crisis-intervention sessions will frankly be a lot of talking and listening to people, giving them a lot of assistance in moving forward.The Iowans are all volunteers, working through a program that’s being coordinated by NOVA, the National Organization for Victim Assistance.
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