When the floodwaters were rising in Arnold, Mo., Diane Bargeon was huddled in her home near Arnold Park with her dog and two cats.
“The water was coming in from two directions,” Bargeon said as she stood outside of the Multi-Agency Response Center, or MARC, at First Baptist Church in Arnold on Thursday. “I just sat there and then boom! The water was there.”
The MARC is a one-stop shopping location for people impacted by floodwaters. Information and services from the American Red Cross and other relief organizations, faith-based groups, and government agencies were provided. This is just one example of how the Red Cross helps families make a full recovery after a disaster.
Like many who attended Thursday’s MARC, this isn’t the first time Bargeon’s home has been impacted by floodwaters. Bargeon had nearly finished making repairs from the flood in 2015 when the waters rose again this spring. She says five feet of water two years ago forced her to have her HVAC, insulation, and skirt around her home replaced. Now there’s a chance she may have to repair or replace all of that again.
“It’s just awful,” Bargeon said. “I can’t afford to move… It cost $7,000 to repair the damage last time, but I had help from outside resources, including the Red Cross.”
Like after the 2015 floods, the Red Cross and other organizations are now working to figure out what is salvageable in Bargeon’s home.
“I want to thank them for all that they do,” Bargeon said.
Others, like Danya Canovi, are searching for help and information where they can. Canovi, who has called Arnold home for 34 years, had about $25,000 in damage done to her family’s home near the Meramec River in 2015. Now, two years later, Canovi says three feet of water destroyed nearly everything in their basement and dealt upwards of $10,000 in damage to their home.
“God has a purpose for everything,” Canovi said. “We will find the help that we need.”
While the floodwaters have receded, the American Red Cross’ disaster relief efforts aren’t over. The Greater St. Louis chapter will be helping people in the weeks and months to come. The Red Cross is a charitable organization and depends on the volunteers and the generosity of Americans to perform its mission. If you would like to support disaster relief efforts, donate online at redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.