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Hundreds Affected By Flooding Turn To Salvation Army For Help

Flooding in Normal
Charlie Schlenker
A scene in Normal after the downpours of June 24-25.

Last month's historic floods left hundreds of McLean County residents in need of help. The Salvation Army of Bloomington said it's fielded calls from over 200 residents who've asked for assistance with flood damage.

Director of Development Angie Bubon said the stories she's heard from people run the gamut from nuisance to devastation. While some residents needed cleaning supplies and fans to dry out soggy basements, others were left unable to stay in their homes.

"We definitely saw a range of people facing different kinds of needs," Bubon said.

A deluge of flood water, sometimes mixed with sewage, rendered some homes temporarily uninhabitable. So far, Bubon said the Salvation Army has provided 23 nights of lodging to families and individuals who had to leave their homes.

Bubon said some of the residents she's working with have flood insurance that will help to cover a portion of the damages, but many don't. And many more residents are renters who have to wait for landlords to make the necessary repairs before they can return home.

"Maybe the landlord wasn't able to get things fixed right away and they were displaced," she said.

Bubon said because major flooding isn't something that happens often in the area, many of the people she's spoken with are overwhelmed.

"I think a lot of it is just people not knowing where to go for help, not knowing who can help, and not knowing what to do," she said.

Bubon said the Salvation Army provides direct assistance when possible, but also can direct residents to other resources.

She said donations — either in the form of monetary assistance or volunteer efforts — are always welcome. Information about how to contribute to flood relief can be found on the Salvation Army website.

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Sarah Nardi is a WGLT reporter. She previously worked for the Chicago Reader covering Arts & Culture.
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