WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH) — Waterbury’s Fire Chief announced Tuesday the cause of the Hospitality Center fire Friday was electrical causes. Now, only days after the tragedy, the community is coming together to support those in-need served by the center.
Electrical causes — probable degradation of wiring over time. That’s what Waterbury’s fire chief tells News 8 sparked a large fire in the building on East Main Street that houses The Hospitality Center — a day center that provides help for the homeless in Waterbury with showers, shelter, clothes and job searches.
Friday, people reacted with shock and concern, knowing how much the center means to the city. But, something positive has emerged.
Since the fire, News 8 has followed an outpouring of support from the community so the Center can continue to help the homeless at a new, temporary location at 965 S. Main Street. Managers at the hospitality center say donations have quadrupled.
“It’s been an emotional rollercoaster. Initially in the beginning it was like how are we going to rebuild? What are we gonna do? What’s it gonna take? Now that emotional rollercoaster it’s tears of joy of happiness.”– Shakira Wade, Hospitality Center Program Manager
They’ve received so many donations they’re funning out of room! They are stacking clothes, blankets, coats, and food wherever they can make space.
Wade says the love and support is what keeps them going.
They’ve gotten so much love, they can now help other agencies who also help those in-need.
“We have alot of children clothing that’s coming in unfortunately we dont have children here that we provide services for so we are giving the clothing to Catholic Charities, the shelters, to Goodwill, to Acts4ministry.”– Shakira Wade, Hospitality Center Program Manager
People whom rely on the Hospitality Center are grateful that it can still keep going.
“It’s a relief to know there still is a place to go and get the help that we all so badly need.”– Jacqueline Gargonia, user of the Hospitality Center
The center is accepting donations all week at 965 South Main Street.