In the spring of 2019, the Middle Loup River, which runs through Sargent, Nebraska (Custer County), flooded and caused significant damage to 90 percent of the homes in the community. As a result, 203 FEMA applications were received by Custer County but only 69 individuals were approved for funding. With the average cost of damages estimated at $10,000 but as high as $61,000, impacted homeowners are facing a huge financial burden. Luckily, local nonprofit organizations like Central Nebraska Community Action Partnership (CenCAP) are stepping up to help.
CenCAP is a health and human services corporation that has specialized in bringing resources related to health care, housing rehabilitation and weatherization, nutrition assistance, education, and case management to its 22,900 square mile service area since 1965. CenCAP and the City of Sargent are working together to help homeowners cover the costly repairs by providing funding to licensed contractors/companies to perform HVAC, electrical work, and foundation repair. In cases where families have already incurred damages and repaired them, but show a financial need, CenCAP and the City of Sargent will reimburse any qualified expenses.
To help cover the cost of the home repairs, the Rebuild the Heartland Community fund recently awarded CenCAP with a $50,000 grant.
“This grant will be a huge financial and morale booster for Sargent,” said Gwenda Horky, Sargent City Clerk. “Due to the flooding and high water table, most of the residents were busy pumping water out of basements during 2019. Due to flooding many residents lost hot water heaters, furnaces, walls, carpet, and furniture. We are Thankful for the funding from Rebuild the Heartland.”