A number of community members and organizations have come together over the past few weeks with efforts of helping the families and victims of three recent fires in our area.
Seven families, consisting of 14 adults and eight children, were left displaced after three multi-dwelling fires struck three area communities last month.
On Monday, Sept. 16, two Brockton families were displaced after a row home fire damaged at least four homes. The home at 221 Valley St., which received the most damage, was occupied by a mother and her 3-year-old boy.
On Tuesday, Sept. 17, firefighters were called to battle a fire at duplex home in Coaldale. The fire, which started at 118 W. High Street, left two adults and their 9-year-old boy displaced.
Around 5 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, less than 36 hours after the first fire, firefighters were called to battle a extended row home fire on Coal Street in Tamaqua. That fire damaged at least nine row homes; four of which receiving the most damage, and left eight adults and five children without a permanent place to live.
Even though the majority of the families affected received assistance from the Tamaqua Salvation Army, Schuylkill County Red Cross and Tamaqua Volunteers group, many are still in need of long term assistance. Sadly, there is no long-term housing or financial assistance available to those without insurance.
Members of the Tamaqua Volunteers group, along with other caring community members, have stepped up to help those affected. One of the events held included a clothing drive held at the Tamaqua Elks Lodge. Organizer Amanda Woodring said many donations of clothing and other items were donated.
Future events planned consist of: a community donation drop-off and giveaway planned for Saturday, Oct. 26 at the M and M Self Storage in Tamaqua, Walking Scared for Charity 3-town event on Sunday, Oct. 27, donation collection outside Hometown Wal-Mart on Saturday, Nov. 2, and donation collection outside Burger King on Wednesday, Nov. 6.
In addition, the Tamaqua Volunteers group has created three one-month funds to help those affected by the Brockton, Coaldale and Tamaqua fires. The president of the groups said that the affected families don't have places to store the items and encourages people to donate money, rather than items. Volunteers are asking anyone to stop by any Wells Fargo Bank in the United States and ask to donate to any or all of these funds, no matter how small. The funds are titled:
- "Sept. 16 Row Home Fire in Brockton"
- "Sept. 17 House Fire in Coaldale"
- "Sept. 18 Row Home Fire in Tamaqua"
For more information about these efforts, call (570) 668-1234 or search for them on Facebook.