The Orlando United Assistance Center (OUAC) is a place offering support, resources and hope for those impacted by the Pulse tragedy. A collaboration between the City of Orlando, Orange County Government and Heart of Florida United Way, the OUAC connects individuals and families with community resources to assist with healing.
In response to the crisis days following the tragedy, the federal, state, local and community agencies established the family assistance center at Camping World Stadium to address immediate needs.
Established on July 11, 2016, the OUAC was created to act as the central hub for those impacted by the tragic event on June 12, 2016 at the Pulse Night Club. The OUAC’s initial and continuous focus is on the survivors, their chosen family and families of those impacted by the tragedy.
Case Managers work with those impacted using Survivor-Family Centered Advocacy. This employs a team-approach to healing by providing comprehensive services, while offering support. OUAC Case Managers use this advocacy approach to navigate a multitude of complex needs aimed at sustaining resiliency and discovering a survivor-family guided “new normal.” Additionally, the diverse OUAC staff are culturally experienced, trauma-informed, LGBTQ-affirming representatives from the Hispanic community who are there to support families.
OUAC continues to evolve based on the ongoing healing of the community. Most recently, in January of 2021, OUAC’s service curriculum has been adopted by The Center Orlando, an organization dedicated to serving Central Florida’s LGBTQ+ community.
Consequences of traumatic events create a ripple effect throughout the entire community – not just among those who were impacted. OUAC aims to open its arms to assist those in Central Florida who were affected in long-term healing through targeted mental health services, community building and awareness. The establishment of a sustained ongoing operation, dedicated to providing long-term assistance to those affected by the Pulse shootings, is modeled after best practices found to be effective in other communities who have also experienced this type of tremendous loss.