Water damage affects Christian Student Fellowship

This photo of the basement of the Christian Student Fellowship was taken on Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015. The basement flooded Saturday morning and is currently in the process of being cleaned up until an indefinite date. Emily Kask/ HERALD

Andrew Henderson

While the majority of WKU’s campus was dealing with frigid temperatures, iced sidewalks and faulty electricity, the Christian Student Fellowship suffered a flood of problems of its own.

Saturday night, Feb. 21, the basement area of the CSF flooded.

Jake Franck, the group’s graduate intern, said the reason for the flooding could be attributed to melting snow and the recent rainfall. This onset of water overwhelmed the sump pumps in the CSF building, causing water to pour out into the basement.  

Franck said they had sustained sizable damage and had to remove the carpet due to contamination. None of their equipment used for worship services, however, have been reported as damaged at this time. Franck gave an early ballpark estimate of the cost of damages incurred. 

“Our early estimate is $30,000, we’re still having work done,” he said.

Nathan Ayers, CSF associate pastor, said he got the call from a student informing him of the flooding. He quickly drove down to examine the damage for himself. 

“The carpet was floating,” Ayers said.

As water continued pouring from the vents, he and others acted quickly to move musical instruments, equipment and to call more people to aid in the endeavor. He commented that sewage had mixed with the water, leading to the carpet’s subsequent removal and two and a half feet of wall being cut out.

Russellville freshman Adam Wilkins recalled hearing about the situation while he was home during the weekend.

“I saw a picture someone sent me and I was flabbergasted,” he said. 

He commented that the cleanup process was all handled fairly quickly and the carpet removal happened the following night after the flood. 

Despite the cleanup process going well, CSF faces the issue of where to host worship services. Both Wilkins and Ayers agreed that this was a problem.

“It’s up in the air right now,” Ayers said. 

He said that CSF would hold its Tuesday worship services upstairs, despite the room possibly being too small to accommodate average student turnout. Ayers said that if it works upstairs, it’ll stay there, but considered the possibility of moving services to Gary Ransdell Hall or Mass Media and Technology Hall if the space becomes an issue. 

The flooding also “throws a wrench in things” for upcoming events, Franck said.

CSF is sponsoring Unite for a Night, a concert featuring Ellie Holcomb on March 7. The proceeds from this event will benefit local non-profit organization HOTEL INC Despite the recent flooding, he assures that all profits from the concert will benefit the charity. 

“Every single penny will go to HOTEL INC,” Franck said. 

Ayers also assured that the flooding would not affect the upcoming concert. He said that he has told students not to worry about the flooding and to focus on the concert in efforts to raise money for HOTEL INC.  

While Ayers is not concerned about the flooding affecting Unite for a Night, he is concerned about the water damage in the basement. He said that because CSF has non-profit status, there’s concern over how they will overcome this ordeal.

“We’re looking for man hours and donations to get us back,” he said.

Despite the somewhat grim circumstances surrounding CSF, all three men were in agreement that this may be for a higher purpose and the best thing to do is pray. 

“Big thing right now would be prayer,” Wilkins said.