Fundraiser raises thousands of dollars for southeast Wisconsin flood victims

NEW MUNSTER, Wis. -- A fund to help flood victims in Kenosha County has reached roughly $10,000. The hope is to keep raising more, as those families face growing clean-up costs. A fundraiser was held Sunday, at Bella Vita Banquet Hall in New Munster, which was one of the worst hit areas.
 
"I was surrounded by water for about five days," says Allen Dunski, who lives in Silver Lake. "The Fox River kept rising. I was on an island for the most part. Half of my foundation decided to sink, so there's some big repairs coming, but there are a lot more homeowners who have lost just about everything, so I consider myself fortunate."
 
Dunski works in construction, and knows how to fix things. So, he started cleaning-up his own property, along with the homes of his friends and neighbors for free.
 
"We were pumping out basements and helping remove furniture," he says. "Then, we realized the need was a lot more than just our houses, so we went out and helped the people that could not help themselves."
Now, almost a month later, he's still helping more and more families recover what they can.
 
"You can see the frustration and sadness," he says. "Some of these people lost everything. They lost all of their valuables. Their family photos. Their livelihoods were down in basements and in homes, and it's gone. And those things are not replaceable."
 
This spirit of service and facing the challenge together is strong in Kenosha County. The line out the door at the fundraiser for flood victims, proved that. There was a silent auction, raffle, food, games and music.
 
As the community waits to hear if they'll get any federal disaster assistance, strangers and community members are donating money, food and clothes to help.
"There are a lot of people hurting here," Dunski says. "You try and calm them down a little bit. Assure them that in the long run, everything will be okay. Because it will. You just try and show some compassion."
 
A special fund for Kenosha County flood victims has been set up at the Sharing Center. Cash donations can be sent to The Sharing Center  P.O. Box 172, Trevor, Wisconsin 53179. Donations can also be delivered to the center at 25700 Wilmot Road in Trevor, or can be made via the website, sharingcenter.net.
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