‘We lost everything’: More flood relief launched in Ontario County

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CANANDAIGUA, N.Y. – Residents in Canandaigua are still cleaning up after last week’s devastating flooding.

Monday, they got help from the Salvation Army and Partnership for Ontario County.

“I had no help whatsoever and if it wasn’t for the kind generosity of these people or people like this in this area, I don’t know where I would be or my children would be and we’re still trying to make the best of it,” said Regina Cornelius.

Cornelius is just one of several thousand residents in Canandaigua still reeling from flooding. A single mom of four boys, she said the help they’re receiving from the Salvation Army really means a lot.

“When we came in and we saw the water rising, I looked out front and I yelled to the boys, all my sons, ‘Get every towel we have and start covering the front’ and as soon as it did it all just swished right in,” she said. “Our dining room is completely – all the hardwood floors – [are] completely buckled up and [have] to be completely finished. We lost everything in our house downstairs.”

Members of the Salvation Army and the Partnership for Ontario County said it’s help they didn’t think twice about giving.

“Nobody was expecting this to happen,” said Salvation Army Major Pamela Rhodes. “Nobody is financially prepared for this to happen and luckily this community is full of people who want to and are able to help.”

Not knowing what to do next or where to turn, Rhodes said if they can give people some short-term assistance, it goes a long way.

“We have seen really just a lot of devastation,” Rhodes said. “There’s 5 to 6 six feet of water in the basement and in some cases it’s gone into the first level of house, so we have just seen people scared.”

“It’s very emotional,” said Tracey Dellostritto, executive director of Partnership for Ontario County. “I think it’s heartbreaking because there’s a lot of emotion tied to it. I think folks react and they are able to really push right through, but I think after a few days it’s really challenging to think about the process, the long process that it could be, so I think that there’s a lot of emotion that folks have right now.”

The flood information center is now open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Chamber of Commerce on South Main Street. The Finger Lakes Area Community Endowment Canandaigua Area Flooding Assistance Recovery Fund has been established to help impacted residents. Donations can be made online, at Canandaigua National Bank & Trust branches in Canandaigua, Victor, Farmington, Shortsville, Bloomfield, and Geneva. Checks can be made payable to FLACE Canandaigua Area Flooding Assistance
Recovery Fund. CNB will match the first $10,000 raised.