by Darwin Campbell, African-American News&Issues
Houston- After a three-alarm fire destroyed part of The Falls Apartments on Antoine Drive, the community has responded with an all hands on deck attack to help families affected by the fire get back on their feet.
The Triumphant Church Pastor Tim Dixon and Grace Temple Pastor Chris Wright joined with members of the religious and activist communities to make the yeoman’s call for help.
“You are not alone.We are here to help support these families and help them get back on their feet,” Dixon said. “We are doing God’s work and following through on the savior’s example and turn this tragedy into triumph.”
The fire damaged and destroyed several units near the rear of the property and affected over 60 people, including a number of children who lost all their school clothes and school supplies and families that lost all their bedding and furniture.
Dixon and Wright made the call for Houston to step up and help its own.
The Falls Apartments is a complex where mostly blue collar and lower wage residents live. Many whose apartments were damaged by the fire lost everything and are having difficulty finding other affordable places to live. Many are unable to meet the deposit and requirements to move to another apartment because they are financially challenged to find the funding. So, Dixon said many are in a financial and housing limbo staying with other family members until repairs are completed.
The Red Cross did come in an provide some temporary relief with vouchers, but beyond those vouchers has done little else to help the residents.
“We appreciate the Red Cross for their immediate assistance,” Dixon said. “However, it was not enough.”
Wright and Dixon noted how difficult it is for the poor who suffer setbacks to battle back with help because of limited wage earner potential and lack of savings.
“We are not looking for blame, but solutions to a very tough situation,” Dixon said. “Love is what love does and while we cannot change the crisis, we can help our neighbors overcome it by show we care, making a difference and getting involved.”
Some local area business have already begun to pitch in and volunteer as drop off stations.
Drop off stations are at The Falls; Sho-Nuff BBQ, 6314 Antoine Drive; The Triumphant Church, 11391 Veterans Memorial Blvd; and The Windsor Nursing Home, 6920 T.C. Jester in Houston.
Items being requested by pastors include new or gently worn clothing, school uniforms, school supplies and new or used furniture. Monetary donations can also be accepted through the Triumphant Church or Grace Temple on behalf of fire victims.
“We are Houston proud and pleased and satisfied with the response,” Dixon said. “Houston rises to care for its own and we know the community will open their heart and lift a helping hand to our neighbors.”
For more information about how you can help, contact Pastor Dixon at 281-836-2826.