My Flood Story

by Suzie Thorson, Retired Director, United Day Nursery

Page 3

We brought our computers over to Head Start. Chris and Delores set them up. We tried to settle into some kind of a schedule - we desperately needed it. Delores and I were in a very, very small office, but it worked. I started attending meetings - I've never been to so many meetings. Church meetings, United Way meetings, city and state meetings and FEMA meetings plus our own meetings. All very worthwhile.

I attended every Church Council and Property Committee meeting there was. Some people were proposing to move from United Lutheran's current location and build a new church in the south end with no plans to include United Day Nursery in the new building. I pushed hard to stay at the current location because it is a beautiful church and a wonderful facility for our children. Dealing with the uncertainty from this situation was the most difficult part of the flood recovery for me.

The United Way, city and state meetings is where I got information about grant money available for flood reconstruction. Immediately I started writing grants to every foundation I could think of. It was a new experience for me because up to this time I had probably written two grants. Along with writing the grants, I had to get a hold of contractors to give me estimates on the cost of reconstruction. This was not easy because they were busy, but my being persistent paid off. They all came through and gave me estimates for general construction, electrical, mechanical, carpet, equipment, etc. Bill, Chris, and I made a list of educational toys and equipment lost with cost information. All this was necessary to complete the grant applications.

In between the meetings, grant writing, and regular administrative duties, we had to move from school to school because of mold first, then back again, then because of asbestos, then back again, so they could clean the school for the fall session - then HOME TO UNITED LUTHERAN CHURCH. For me the moves were simply something we had to do to take care of the children. It took a lot of muscle and was very tiring but it had to be done. The staff was fantastic - it was the working together (including our families) that made it possible.

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Lake Agassiz School
United Day Nursery at Lake Agassiz School
Photo: Alan Draves
The United Day Nursery flood recovery team
Photo: United Day Nursery

This page maintained by Alan Draves.