Gov. Ron DeSantis announces emotional support resources for Surfside community

As search and rescue efforts in the Champlain Towers collapse in Surfside, Florida reach one week, state leaders have launched a platform to provide emotional support and assistance for those affected by the disaster. 

SurfsideStrength.com is a joint effort from federal, state, and local municipalities. The platform provides a directory of assistance services, hotlines, and handouts for the families of the residents, first responders, and general community. 

 

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Gov. Ron DeSantis announced the platform Wednesday morning in Surfside: 

“We have mental health resources that are here in Surfside, [that] have been here for a number of days now. We’ve been able to link individual families at their request for that support, but that support is there if folks need it, and we want to make sure that they’re getting to the right places. Because everybody handles these things differently…this is going to require a lot of attention and understandably so. So, our state agencies are in that for the long haul, as are the community groups that have stepped up so well.”

The site also serves as a database for families to register a missing or found person. As of Wednesday afternoon, the number of deceased victims reached 18 while 145 people remain unaccounted for. Miami-Dade Fire and Rescue Chief Alan Cominsky assured the community that search and rescue efforts are ongoing. 

“It’s a very difficult situation, but we’re working collaboratively in a group to attain that goal, and that’s to save someone’s life.”

The platform also lists a number of donation pools for impacted families and first responders. Surfside, which has a prominent Jewish community, will receive support from the ATJC Aventura Turnberry Jewish Center, Greater Miami Jewish Federation and nine other organizations.