Northside Project: Dennis[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaIa1o-9JZs]
Uploaded by UpTakeVideo on Aug 19, 2011
Dennis and Deborah are like a lot of Minnesotans. They have put in decades of hard work at their jobs, pay their taxes and rarely ask for help—until now. On May 22nd a tornado that devastated Minneapolis on the north side destroyed their home.
Their family of seven was forced to seek refuge in the local Armory and at the North Commons Recreation Center. For weeks, they and their five children slept on cots on the floor of a gymnasium. But with five children, one of whom is 21 and has a mental disability, the shelters offered by the City of Minneapolis weren’t the right fit. Instead they spent weeks in limbo in a hotel room in Brooklyn Center.
“Itapos;s kind of hard to find housing when you have a large family,” said Deborah. “If we go into a shelter, [our eldest son] will be left out on the street.”
Dennis and Deborah boasted long histories of stable employment before the storm. She worked in the hotel industry for over 15 years. He was a welder and a restaurant cook. Yet the couple feels as though they have been treated like jobless, homeless people.
“We are being treated like bums,” Deborah said. “But I have paid taxes. I didn’t ask the state for anything—until the storm.”
“We are tornado victims,” said Dennis. “We should be getting help. … To make a long story short, nothing is happening.”
WHAT DENNIS NEEDS
Dennis, Deborah and the family have just moved into a rental property. The Salvation Army helped with the deposit.
They currently need school clothes, shoes and supplies for their children. Cash donations or Gift cards are suggested.
A nonprofit has stepped up to replace damaged furniture, but they could still use a television to replace the one they lost in the storm
Employment to replace jobs lost as a result of their instability following the storm. Dennis is an experienced chef/cook and Deborah has much experience in the Hotel management industry.