The American Red Cross is helping several people who’ve been left homeless after a fire destroyed an apartment building in northwest Iowa. It happened Sunday afternoon in downtown Spirit Lake. Kara Kelly, spokesperson for the American Red Cross of Greater Iowa, says there were initially 10 individuals who sought help last night at an emergency shelter set up in a local church.
“The first thing was to make sure they had a warm place to stay,” Kelly said. “Secondly, was to make sure they had clothes, shoes and food.” Four residents stayed at the church overnight, while others were able to stay with family and friends. It’s unclear how many people lived in the apartment building, but Kelly said Red Cross volunteers will be meeting one-on-one with many of the victims to determine how they’ll move forward.
“They might need money for food or clothing and they might need a place to stay for a couple of days,” Kelly said. The Red Cross is also working with other nonprofit agencies in the area to assist with the victims’ needs. There were 32 apartment units in the building, but not all of them were occupied at the time of the fire. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
(Reporting by Ryan Long, KICD, Spencer)