Monday 9 March, 2009
The community of New Hamburg and area has rallied in impressive fashion to assist the victims of the December, 2008 Nith River flood.
The New Hamburg Flood Relief Fund committee, formed as a joint effort of the New Hamburg Board of Trade and churches of New Hamburg and area, has now virtually completed its work. The committee has announced that just over $60,000 was raised for the relief effort. All of the donated funds are being distributed to families that were victims of the severe flooding.
The mandate of the flood fund was to assist residents to replace essential items that were not covered by insurance. This included furnaces, hot water heaters and electrical panels. Funds were also given to assist in mold treatment.
When the committee completed its evaluation of the applications for assistance, remarkably, the funding needed was almost exactly equal to the funds raised.
Because the donations were made either through local churches, or directly into the New Hamburg Flood Relief Fund account at the local TD Canada Trust, the committee does not have any list of individuals or companies that donated to the cause. However, the committee does want to thank local service groups for their donations -- the Lions Club, the Optimist Club and the New Hamburg 8K Race Committee. As well, many local churches raised funds for the effort.
The Township of Wilmot donated $5,000 to the Flood Fund, while MP Harold Albrecht participated through promotion and fundraising and MPP Leeanna Pendergast also donated promotional advertising.
Led by local brokers Josslin Insurance Brokers and Zehr Insurance Brokers, a number of insurance companies contributed to the cause, with the total from that sector reaching above $20,000.
New Hamburg Board of Trade President Paul Knowles said, "We should all be very proud of our community. Our churches, our community groups, businesses and residents have all made a major contribution toward making life a bit easier for our neighbours who suffered such devastating losses in the December flood."
The money is being distributed to those victims who applied for assistance. When that is completed, the fund will be closed and the committee disbanded. Said Knowles, "This very successful effort was intended to meet needs created by an unusually challenging flood, the worst in many decades."
An accounting of the flood fund (total raised and total amount distributed) will be posted on the Board of Trade website later this month.