Contact: Amy Hasenberg, (608) 266-2839

MADISON – The Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) has authorized $20,000 in grant funds through its Disaster Program to help victims of the recent natural gas explosion in Sun Prairie. The grant money will provide emergency housing assistance to residents who lost their home due to the damaging explosion and fire.

“Our communities have shown a genuine commitment to coming together to mourn the loss of Sun Prairie Fire Fighter Captain Cory Barr and to help the families and businesses who were impacted by the tragic gas explosion in Sun Prairie,” said Governor Walker. “These loans are another way we can help our communities recover from this tragedy. Together we are all a part of #SunPrairieStrong.”

WHEDA’s Disaster Grants are used to assist with short-term, emergency housing needs, and are disbursed through a local agent, in this instance Sunshine Place. Sunshine Place is a nonprofit that provides a variety of social services for Sun Prairie residents in need.

“WHEDA strongly supports Governor Walker’s efforts to come to the aid of our citizens,” said WHEDA Director Wyman Winston. “Through our Disaster Program, we are ready to help those currently in desperate need of a safe place to live.”

On July 20, 2018, Governor Scott Walker declared a State of Emergency in Sun Prairie. On July 10, a ruptured natural gas line in the city of Sun Prairie caused a major explosion and subsequent fire that severely damaged buildings, roads and utilities in the downtown area. The destruction also displaced numerous residents and closed businesses. Governor Walker directed state agencies to help those affected by the disaster.

For more information on emergency housing assistance in Sun Prairie, contact Sunshine Place Executive Director Joanna Cervantes at 608-825-3875.

For over 45 years, WHEDA, as an independent state authority, has provided low-cost financing for housing and small business development in Wisconsin. Since 1972, WHEDA has financed more than 73,000 affordable rental units, helped more than 125,800 families purchase a home and made more than 29,000 small business and agricultural loan guarantees. For more information on WHEDA programs, visit or call 800-334-6873

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