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2023 East Coast Storm

Severe storms swept through the eastern United States in December 2023. Approximately 600,000 individuals lost power in New York, New Jersey, and New England due to a rainstorm accompanied by powerful winds. Freezing temperatures are exacerbating the situation. Tragically, the storm caused at least four fatalities. This weather system originated in Florida, sparking flash flood emergencies along the South Carolina coast and through the mid-Atlantic states. Notably, the National Weather Service office in Charleston reported a tide peak of 9.86 feet (mean lower low water) in the Charleston Harbor just before noon local time on Sunday. This tidal surge stands as the highest on record unrelated to a tropical cyclone, surpassed only by Hurricane Hugo in 1989, an unnamed hurricane in 1940, and Hurricane Irma in 2017.

Georgetown, South Carolina and its neighboring areas experienced more than 12 inches of rain, resulting in significant flooding. Reports also confirm flooding in southern North Carolina and along the South Carolina coast. Brendan Schaper, a meteorologist from the National Weather Service in Melbourne, Florida, disclosed that the showers on Saturday shattered daily rainfall records in all seven of central Florida’s tracking sessions. The results of this rainstorm have been widespread, leaving a substantial number of residents without power and significant flood damage. 

CERF+ has connected with local partners on the ground to learn more about the needs of local artists and offer resources to craft artists who were affected by the storms. If you are an artist working in craft or materials-based folk/traditional disciplines affected by the storms, please visit our recovery resources and submit an inquiry for our Emergency Relief program. We are here for you and can help guide you through the application process.

Disaster Recovery Resources for Artists

In addition to our Emergency Relief grant, CERF+’s Studio Protector also has resourcesto support artists as they begin to assess and re-enter their damaged studios, including:

Protect Your Art Studio from Hurricane/High Wind

Protect your Art Studio from Power Outages

Assessing Potential Hazards

Unsafe Building Conditions to Look Out For

Salvage DOs + DON’Ts

Save Your Family Treasures from FEMA

Staying Safe During Cleanup

NCAPER Arts Field Guide to Federal Disaster Relief

Stopping a Mold Outbreak After Water Damage

The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) provides confidential, multilingual crisis counseling and support for anyone in the U.S./territories experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters, including COVID-19. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 to reach a trained counselor 24/7, 365-days-a-year.

Please be safe, and let us know if we can do anything to help.

Finally, for those who are able to, please consider making a tax-deductible donation today. Your support directly helps craft artists in the aftermath of emergencies and disasters.