Hurricane Sandy victims in New Jersey are getting help from a Vermont call center.
Vermont 2-1-1 in Essex Junction is fielding overflow calls and returning calls from voice messages left with New Jersey 2-1-1. The 19 volunteers have been answering about 100 questions a week from Hurricane Sandy victims. Staff here contacted their counterparts following the Superstorm to see how they could help. Most of the questions have to do with food resources.
"In October before Sandy, people used their food stamps. And then Sandy hit and they had no more food stamps. Then November came, they got their food stamps and replenished their food-- then got hit with the nor'easter, so they lost power again and lost the food again," said Mary Ellen Mendel of Vermont 2-1-1.
The volunteers will take next week off due to the holiday, and will contact 2-1-1 in New Jersey to see if they are still needed for the following week.