A blind woman’s bungalow in Carlton-on-Trent was flooded with sewage during Storm Babet and has been inundated with gifts and donations after posting on a Facebook group of support sight loss charity Guide Dogs.
A guide dog owner whose bungalow was flooded with sewage during a storm has been inundated with gifts and donations.
Jeanette Stevens’ bungalow in Carlton was flooded during Storm Babet on Friday, October 20.
The flood destroyed nearly all of Jeanette’s and her husband’s belongings and toys and bedding belonging to Koko.
After posting in a closed Facebook group, run by volunteers who support sight loss charity Guide Dogs, Jeanette received over £400 of gifts and donations, for Koko and her family.
Koko is Jeanette’s third guide dog and is a seven-year-old black Labrador cross Golden Retriever.
“The sewage and water were heading towards our bungalow that evening,” said Jeanette.
She added: “We thought it had settled, but it got to 9.30pm and it started coming through the floor, so we had to get out.
“For the first few nights, we stayed with friends in Grantham.
“After that, we went to temporary accommodation in Sutton-on-Trent and kept going back to the bungalow to try and rescue things.
“We had to throw most of Koko’s toys and bedding in the bin as they were covered in sewage, and I was just in tears.
“My husband said the way Koko looked as we were throwing away her things was so sad.
“It was heartbreaking to see how she was.”
After leaving the accommodation in Sutton-on-Trent, Jeanette stayed with her mum who has dementia to care for her and Koko stayed with volunteer fosterers, arranged through Guide Dogs.
The family then moved to a temporary accommodation in Ollerton.
Jeanette said: “By this point, everything of Koko’s had gone, all her toys and beloved teddies. She just had a cushion in the car we could keep.
“I felt awful for her, so I put a post on a Guide Dogs community Facebook group as I just wanted a virtual hug.
“I never expected the response we received.
“People started saying if they could have my address, and first we received a £30 Amazon voucher.
“We then started receiving parcels and boxes for Koko, full of toys and donations for her and for us.
“Once we were all reunited in our temporary accommodation in Ollerton, Koko could open her gifts and it was like Christmas and her birthday all rolled into one.
“She was sticking her nose into all the presents trying to open them and wagging her tail.
“One of the best things was to receive not one, but two Kevin the Carrot toys. Her toy carrot was her favourite toy that we had to throw away.
“I was in happy tears, Fred, my husband, was happy, and Koko was back to herself again.”
In total, Jeanette received around £150 in monetary donations and £300 worth of toys and gifts for Koko.
Jeanette added: “I don’t know how to thank everyone who sent us something, but I can say they have given us hope and happiness.”
Tracey Getten, operations manager for guide dogs based in Nottingham, said: “We were extremely sorry to hear how Storm Babet has affected guide dog owner Jeanette and her family and we’re supporting Jeanette and her guide dog Koko during this time.
“It’s wonderful that our wider Guide Dogs Family, made up of volunteers, guide dog owners and supporters, have reached out to Jeanette and Koko, and made them feel loved and cared for with their kind gifts and donations.
“We wish the family the best of luck as they look to the future and will continue to do all we can to support Jeanette and Koko.”