Winter Storm: A Blessing in Disguise

Lynn Schmidt, NCC C.O.O.
On Friday December 23rd, 2022 the NCC campus experienced what most of the Niagara Region experienced. The day began with high winds and the snow they predicted was coming around 11:00 am was right on time. By noon most of the campus was already without power and the snow was coming down fast and not letting up. 
It was a blessing that the school was already on a 2-week Christmas Break which meant there were very few students on campus. In addition, we were heading into a full 3-day residential closure from the 24th to the 26th.

Fort Erie proved to be one of the hardest hit areas and a state of emergency was declared. Most of the town was without power and heat, roads were closed and driving was not an option as plows were unable to get out for a number of days. All over the town cars were abandoned as it became unsafe to drive. The storm was unlike anything I had ever experienced before. I live on the campus of NCC and for a number of days when you looked out our front window, you couldn’t see the campus due to the whiteout conditions.

“Throughout the storm, I worried about our buildings; would they be able to handle the extreme cold and what kind of damage would they endure?”

On December 26th we were finally able to dig out enough to get around campus and assess the damage. Upon our initial investigation, it was obvious that the gym/cafeteria was the hardest hit. The extreme temps and lack of power caused pipes to freeze, break and create quite a bit of damage. We did get some good news that day as power was restored around 6:00 pm that evening.

Over the course of the following days we spent most of our time coming up with a plan. We had already delayed having students return to campus which would give us some extra time. Once power was restored we did have heat and power in our dorms but the cafeteria had no water and heat due to boiler issues. Thankfully with the assistance of the insurance company, a tentative plan was in place for the hardest-hit areas of campus and we were able to welcome students back to class on Tuesday, January 3rd, 2023.

We had so much to be thankful for even in the midst of the chaos and cleanup. God has made sure we are being taken care of, whether it’s the fact that we had no students on campus during the storm or the resourcefulness of the team from the insurance company assigned to NCC. My experience with the insurance company thus far has been great! It is obvious that they understand our school and want to ensure that it is disrupted as little as possible. I am being brought to the table on all decisions and they are definitely moving forward with our best interest in mind. These are answers to prayer and another reminder that God is in control.

There are workers on campus every day now and we are very thankful for what they are doing. For those of you who may be interested in the specifics of the repairs being done, they are listed below:

- A new boiler has been installed which provides heat and water to the entire building.
- New piping and rads will be installed throughout the building.
- A new hardwood floor will be installed in the gym.

- A new roof will be installed on the entire building.
- All wet materials have been removed and the drywall will be replaced.

Chapel/Visitor Centre
- A large part of the roof has been replaced.
- Wet materials will be removed and drywall repairs will be completed.

About Us

Niagara Christian Collegiate (NCC) is an independent, non-denominational Christian school located on the beautiful Niagara River near Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada.
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