Special Needs Program
Applications and other Forms
About the Special Needs Program
The Special Needs Program is available to all Lee County residents at no cost. It provides shelter from a Tropical Storm or Hurricane for those who live in a home and/or area that is not safe from storm surge or wind, and have no other safe place to go. It also provides transportation to a shelter for those residents that do not have a way to get there.
You must register to receive these services by completing the Special Needs Program application, located at the top of this page. More information about the program is provided in the brochure above, or you can call Emergency Management at (239) 533-0622.
Some things you should know about the program:
- You must register every year. Your application is good for one calendar year only.
- Not every shelter will open. Only those safe from storm surge and wind for each particular storm will open.
- Emergency Public Shelters are open to everyone and do not require pre-registration.
- Bring to the shelter things you need to survive, such as prescriptions, personal hygiene items, sleeping bag, cot, pillow, change of clothes, glasses, special dietary needs, books/magazines/cards or other things to help pass the time during sheltering.
- Food and water will be provided but it would be prudent to bring some food items with you in case you do not like what is being served.
- Service animals are allowed in all the shelters.
- Pets are NOT allowed in the Emergency Public or Special Care shelters.
- Pets can ONLY shelter in the Pet Friendly Shelter (South Fort Myers High School).
- We stop processing applications when Lee County enters the 5-day forecast cone, so submit your application early in the season.
What you need to know about the Special Care Shelter:
- Special Care Shelter will be open for those with medical needs that require electricity, such as oxygen dependence, dialysis, ventilators, nebulizers, etc.
- You must pre-register for the Special Care Shelter, using the application above.
- You must have a companion/caregiver accompany you during the time you shelter, as we have a limited number of staff working.
- You will receive a confirmation letter and instructions to advise that your name is on the registry, and what to expect if shelters will be opening.
- You should have a plan for where you will go if you cannot return to your home because of damage.
Applications can be filled in on your computer and emailed, or they can be printed. If you do not have a printer, call (239) 533-0640 or (239) 533-0622 to have the forms mailed to you.