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Efforts underway to support single mother and three children after Holyoke apartment fire

Efforts underway to support single mother and three children after Holyoke apartment fire
Published: Apr. 16, 2022 at 10:57 PM EDT
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HOLYOKE, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -The Holyoke Fire Department responded to a fire that broke out in an apartment building on Congress Avenue Tuesday. Luckily, no injuries were reported but several residents are now without a place to live including a single mother and her three kids.

Western Mass News spoke with her cousin who is organizing fundraising efforts to help the family get back on their feet.

“I started the Gofundme for Tara and her children because they basically lost everything it’s very, very, devastating, so I’m hoping the Gofundme will get them the stuff that they need...They grabbed a couple clothes but everything else is gone, the kids’ schools uniforms everything,” said family member Sara Polastri.

Polastri, of Holyoke, told Western Mass News that her cousin, Tara, and her three children seen here in these photos, lost nearly everything after a fire broke out in an apartment building on Congress Avenue in Holyoke on Tuesday.

“She said that it started on the third floor in their bathroom ceiling fan and it traveled upstairs the fire was in the walls, so they had to destroy all the walls her whole ceiling is completely gone so everything is pretty much gone,” said Polastri.

According to the Holyoke Fire Department, the fire had traveled up to the roof where emergency officials had to use saws to open the roof completely and then were able to extinguish the fire. All 30 tenants were evacuated safely. Polastri told Western Mass News that Tara and the kids had to rush their cat and newborn kittens to the vet where they are being treated for heavy smoke inhalation.

“She had a cat and she just had a litter so with the fire a lot of smoke got in their lungs so they got rushed to the emergency vet they had to get put on oxygen so it’s expensive,” said Polastri.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Holyoke Fire Department. Polastri said she hopes the Gofundme will help the family rebuild after being left without a home.

“She’s staying with me for a couple of days but everything else she has to pay for, the red cross gave them some help but they lost too much...They are telling them that it could be two years for them to even move back in,” said Polastri.

Information on the Gofundme for Tara and her three kids can be found here.