Vinnies to reopen in five weeks
It could take St Vincent De Paul up to five weeks to reopen its Woy Woy centre after the June long weekend storms destroyed most of the building.
According to store manager Mr John Kelly, the roof of the building was "peeled off like a sardine can".
Mr Kelly estimates the storm caused up to $300,000 worth of damage.
"It is just total devastation," Mr Kelly said.
"We had just spent a lot of time and money updating the facility and were open only a week before the storm hit."
Almost $600,000 was spent renovating the building over several months before the storm on June 10.
"We had just installed a new kitchen for disadvantaged women to come and learn how to cook and a playroom where their children could be minded," Mr Kelly said.
"It was going to be a place where disadvantaged women could come and learn various life skills in a safe and comfortable environment.
"It is really heartbreaking to see the facility like this, especially after so much hard work was put into the renovations."
According to Mr Kelly most of the damage was caused by the heavy rain which destroyed the roof, allowing water to pour into the building.
"The rain destroyed all the carpet, electrics, walls and ceilings in the building," Mr Kelly said.
"All of this has to be completely removed and refurbished."
He said the most devastation comes from not being able to help the community in need.
"We have had to ask the local community in need of our support to go to other centres," Mr Kelly said.
"This can be tough for struggling families who have limited transport options."
Mr Kelly would like to thank the volunteers and community for their patience during this time.
"We look forward to reopening the centre and helping out the families in need on the Peninsula once again," Mr Kelly said.
Clare Graham, 20 Jul 2007