By Sandy Hendrickson, special contributor
Torrential rains in late July and early August caused flash flooding in central Kansas and devastated many homes in Lindsborg, Ellinwood and Hutchinson.
In Lindsborg and Ellinwood, the flood waters came and flowed out of the towns within a few hours, leaving many basements filled with water and more than 200 homes damaged. Hutchinson had 333 homes affected, many with floodwater not receding for several days.
United Methodist volunteers from the Hutchinson District helped muck out basements, remove sheetrock and haul belongings out to salvage or dispose.
Now, homeowners are dealing with the expense of reconstructing and refurbishing their homes and trying to get furnaces in before winter. In Lindsborg alone, 15 homes need new furnaces, and all of those families also had to purchase new water heaters.
The cases of unmet needs in Ellinwood and Hutchinson are still being researched to locate people who are in the most need.
Long-term recovery committees have been established in each community to help address the needs financially and with volunteers. A grant has been requested from the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) to assist with the United Methodist recovery efforts.
Sandy Hendrickson is the disaster-response coordinator for the Kansas West Conference.