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Fair Seeks To Ease Flood Recovery

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28) Cedar Rapids held a community resource fair at the Cedar Rapids Public Library on Wednesday.  It offered resources from ten area non-profits and social service agencies for victims of the late June flash flooding.

People lined up well before the meeting began to learn what help they can receive for flood clean-up. City officials said flood victims have been struggling to locate available resources, and they hope the fair made things easier.

 This is really an effort to put everything at peoples fingertips and allow them to learn the possibilities of what might be out there to help them, Emily Muhlbach the Development Services Communications Coordinator for the City of Cedar Rapids said.
The city said that 633 households reported water damage during the storm. Dennis Shakespeare was one of the storms victims. He is still working to clean things up in his two duplexes off of D Avenue North West. He came with one of his tenants, Michelle Sparrowgrove, to the fair. She said the worst part of the flooding was losing pictures of her kids.

It is stuff  I cant get them back. I was a single mom, it was just me and them, Sparrowgrove said.
In addition to non-profit and social service agencies, Mid American, Alliant and city leaders participated in the fair. Dennis made an effort to speak with city leaders about some of his flooding concerns. Vinton Ditch sits behind his duplexes and he's not sure the city is doing all it can to keep the ditch from flooding. He said he simply wanted to know why things happened. The city explained that the flash flood was simply out of their control.
The cause of that event is Mother Nature dumping more water than the drainage way could handle and the ground could absorb, David Elgin, The Director of Cedar Rapids Public Works said.
For now, Dennis will keep cleaning up, washing away what water left behind.


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