LAKE COUNTY FLOOD DISASTER
Hi everyone, I'd like to start this off by saying that my family and I have never been the type to ask for much. We've dealt with all the bombs that life has thrown at us, by sticking together through thick and thin and making the best of every situation. However, over the past two years we've faced an increasingly difficult situation that has taken it's toll on my entire family, financially and emotionally. Two years ago my father was diagnosed with ALS. Watching as he succumbed to this illness has been trying for all of us. I have 9 siblings and 25 nieces and nephews. My dad is the rock of our family; he keeps us all together. We all feel powerless, watching him slowly lose control of his body and became paralyzed. From youngest to oldest, we've all had to deal with the horrors of this illness. My father has always wanted a farm for all his children and grandchildren to call home. A few months before his diagnosis, he made that dream a reality. Although the illness has put a huge strain on our entire family, we had a place to call home. A few days ago we woke up to a giant flood, covering most of our yard. Unfortunately, we had to cancel our flood insurance policy several weeks ago due to the financial strains associated with my father's ALS. We had intended to reinstate it as soon as we were financially stable. The flood is so bad that our house looks like it's its own island. Within one night my father's dream became a nightmare. Many of our animals died and the few that we saved are now at a shelter. My family had to evacuate the house and the home insurance that we have won't cover any of damages. We cannot afford to fix the damages that have already occurred: the loss of five cars, all of our farming equipment and machinery and our workshop (and all of our tools) and the barn. For now the two main floors are dry, but water is pouring in the basement and there is already mold. We are hoping for the best, but unsure what to expect in the days to come. I thank god that we were able to find temporary housing with generous friends and family. We've worked so hard on this house and we put everything we have into it and now it's disappearing before our eyes. I'm asking you from the bottom of my heart to please help us restore my father's dream and bring my family back under one roof.
People are asking how they can help, which we are so grateful for. Our most immediate need is a home (that is handicap accessible for my father). He is currently in a hotel room, but we can't afford to keep him there for long and he is confined to one room. If anyone has a vacation home or vacant rental unit that they are willing to loan us, we would be most grateful!!
I'm loving the love, thank you all so much for helping. I personally want to hug and thank every individual who has read, shared, donated and willing to help my family. You have no idea how much we all appreciate this. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers, This means so much to us! please continue to share and spread our story! Much love from my family and I! Words cant describe how much we appreciate everyones love and effort to help my family, the smile on my fathers face when he heard about how many kind people out there to help, made me so happy. You guys gave us strength, hope, and faith. Thank you so much ❤❤❤ God bless
Also thank you to HARP- in Barrington for rescuing and caring for our animals through this rough time.
Some of you had inquired about helping with clean-up when we get to that stage and we are finally there! Tomorrow the family will be doing a major clearing of everything that has been ruined in the basement. SATURDAY we would like to invite anyone who is able and willing, to come and help clean up the property. We will have gloves, masks, hand sanitizer, garbage bags, a dumpster, water, pop and some kind of snack. We aren't really sure how to organize this (because thankfully we've never been in this position before!), so for now we are asking that if you are interested in attending the clean-up, please email: email@example.com. She will try to keep things organized/ providing suggestions of how to help, so that we don't waste anyone's time! If last minute you find yourself free, feel free to come by, but be patient with us as we try to figure all of this out!
A couple of important things: it smells awful- you should be aware of that coming in. Hopefully it's from all the debris and as we get it cleaned up, we expect that will improve. Still we aren't sure about air quality, so if your immune system is in any way compromised, please don't come! We want you to stay healthy and we will get this cleaned up one way or another, so your prayers and kind thoughts are all we need!
Even 20-30 minute shifts is very helpful to us! It's a big property and it has to be cleaned before the animals (including our dogs who have full roaming privileges) can come home!
Please don't bring small children! There is garbage from the river and we don't want any accidents!! Just use your own judgement about what is appropriate for your family.
If you have any donations to drop off, Saturday is a good time to do it because a lot of the family will be around. If you have questions about what is needed, please reach out to the above email. I can tell you immediately that any kind of tool is at the top of our priority list. All of the tools were lost and/or destroyed and we can't do many repairs etc without them!
Also if you can't make it Sat, but want to help, feel free to reach out to the email above. We may or may not need another clean-up day (depending on turn out) and we will definitely have repairing/rebuilding jobs (tiny, small, big and giant!) once things are cleaned up.
Again, thank you all so much. This whole experience has been so humbling and in a funny way so beautiful. It's been incredible to see how strangers have gone out of their way to help our family. Thank you from the bottom of all of our hearts. We hope to meet and hug you all ❤️