Emergency Management planner asks business community to help needy locals

Posted on July 31, 2017 by Romi White

Mark your calendars and make plans to join the Greater Navarre Area Chamber of Commerce for its August 11th Membership Breakfast. Guest speaker is Santa Rosa County Emergency Management Plans Chief Daniel Hahn, who is asking the business community to help locals in need.

“After a disaster people are affected negatively, usually by water or wind. When the disaster is large enough, it can get a Presidential declaration, and FEMA money will eventually be introduced to the community along with possible funding from large non-profits,” Hahn said, adding, “However, the problem is all this external money takes time to arrive.”

Additionally, according to Hahn, FEMA is in the process of changing the rules for disaster support, and it will become harder to get external money into Santa Rosa County.

So Hahn has the idea is to expand something that started after the 2014 flooding — a community disaster fund. He is trying to recruit the nearly 2,000 businesses in Santa Rosa County to take part in the effort.

“Imaging if we could get 2,000 businesses, non-profits, churches, or individuals to donate $5 a month to a disaster fund. In one month, we would have $10,000. In one year we would have $120,000, with 100 person of this money going to the disaster fund to help locals in need,” Hahn said.

Each week Hahn emails a list local needs, ranging from flood and house fire victims to disabled locals with leaky roofs.

“I hope you will assist me in helping people that need aid in our county. I cannot do it alone. (All those mentioned) above would not be helped necessarily, since some are not disaster related, but some are. I am asking you to be part of the solution,” he said.

Hahn spent 22 years in the United States Army prior to starting his career in emergency management in 2006 and was named the Florida Emergency Preparedness Association’s 2009 Emergency Management Professional of the year. Hahn earned his master’s degree in emergency and disaster management and also has a MBA with a specialization in homeland security policy and leadership.

If you’d like to receive Hahn’s weekly newsletter, join SAFER Santa Rosa for free at www.safersantarosa.org. The webpage also has a donation button.

The chamber breakfast will take place at Days Inn Conference Center. Registration and food service starts at 7:30 a.m., and the program begins at 8 a.m. Cost is $10.00 for members. Potential new members may attend for $15.00, and the entry fee includes a full breakfast catered by Golden Corral.

Deadline to register is August 9 via rsvp@greaternavarrechamber.com.