Local effort underway to help flood victims

By Per Peterson

Pam Anderson is one of hundreds of Tracy residents who were forced to gut their basement after the July 3 flood. Like so many others, she was left with no choice. And, like so many others, she attended last week’s Multi-Agency Resource Center looking for some answers.

But Anderson attended the two-day event, not as a flood victim, but as a community member looking to help.

Anderson is at the forefront of a local effort aimed at helping Tracy residents deal with the after-effects of the flood.

“I talked to the Homeland Security guy quite a bit — he’s helping us figure out our Tracy Long-Term Recovery Team, that’s why I’m here,” said Anderson, who teaches Spanish at Tracy Area High School.

Anderson said the group is in the learning process, but wants to be available to those who still need assistance after all the state and federal agencies leave town. They are in the process of getting 501c3 tax-exempt status and are getting ready to accept donations to the recovery efforts.

“We’ve been told there are people waiting to donate to the recovery efforts but they don’t have an avenue to do that, so our team is getting set up to do it,” she said. “We have a bank account at MinnWest, we have a Facebook page — Help Tracy, MN 2018, kind of as a resource for people. We’re just kind of getting our feet wet.”

The group right now consists of five members, who will likely remain anonymous. Lutheran Social Services will be hiring a case manager who will be charged with looking at individual needs and will then report to the LTRT.

“If I say Person A needs to get their bathroom up and running yet and they don’t have the means to do it, we need to find people like from Schwan’s, or someone from Menards — we have to put those people together,” Anderson said. “Basically all the businesses we can come up with who might be able to donate.

Donations can be sent to PO Box 1033, Tracy, MN 56175 or dropped off at MinnWest Bank in Tracy in the “Tracy Long Term Recovery” account. For more information, email HelpTracyMN2018@gmail.com

“We’ll still be here when the Salvation Army leaves and the Red Cross is gone and after they make a determination on whether we get federal money or not,” said Anderson. “We’ll be here to try and help people with unmet needs.”