Tornado recovery workshops help communities rebuild

The recovery continues more than six weeks later.

We’re talking about all the devastation from the tornado outbreak on March 2.

Several died, damage was in the multimillions, and some people still don’t have all their utilities back on.

But many helping hands continue to reach out to those in need.
Our sister station went to a tornado workshop where teaching empowerment of recovery and hope extends not just to individuals. It also goes out to all of the hard-hit communities as a whole.

In West Liberty's mobile, makeshift city hall, utility clerk Sharon Lykins still sees people like Christina Cantrell -- tornado victims who lost every thing but faith and hope.

“I see us recovering, but it will take a while," Lykins said. "Not today or tomorrow, but someday we will be better. Many people are asking about the type of housing and how they can build back, both individuals and businesses.”

The temporary city hall itself shows a step to recovery. And now, in the classroom and in the field, members of the World Church Service are holding tornado recovery workshops.

Amid the continuing debris removal, the national helping group is training locals to manage money and resources. It's to help take the best path to rebuild and recover the entire city -- one or several steps at a time, whatever works best.

“No small town can exist for a long term without the town businesses, the government buildings, the infrastructure," workshop leader Bryan Crousore said. The faith contingent can not do it all, but the community can not do it without the faith folks.”

In West Liberty, they say it takes the entire community to see destruction turned into construction and recovery.

The hope is that the West Liberty City Hall will be ready to re-open sometime next month.

Similar tornado recovery workshops will take place Wednesday in Paintsville and on Thursday in Louisa.

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