SHELTON, Conn. (WTNH) – Shelton saw a fire tear down a historic building, but from the rubble a response. Wednesday was the first day renters and business owners could apply for low interest loans to help them recover.
The response is so great, volunteers say they don’t have enough space to store anymore furniture.
They’ve got units filled with clothing and thousands of dollars to divvy out.
A light fixture, an iron trash can. It’s hard see what used to be there after the January 6th fire but the memories are vivid.
“This is one of the first buildings built downtown here back in the 1880’s and it’s sad to see it go,” said Chris Jones, Volunteer Firefighter Shelton. “I know a lot of the residents here that were displaced so it’s like helping your neighbor.”
Not only did people open up their hearts, they emptied their homes filling 12 of these units at Conti storage.
“We have run out of space so all our larger bins are taken so we’re up to please get the stuff out and then hopefully we can get more stuff in,” said Pat Reynolds, Conti Storage.
She says without a place to live, these items have no place to live.
“I think they need to apartment first,” said Reynolds.
That’s where the Small Business Administration could come in. The Governor declared it a federal disaster.
So now low interest loans are available to business owners and residents.
“This may not be the first thing that they’re thinking about but we do want them to take the opportunity while we’re here to get this and have this as an option for the long term recovery,” said Jerome Strong, US Small Business Admin.
And they’ll always have their community who have handed over money, clothes, and donations from day one.
“The people that were in the building didn’t have much to lose, but they lost everything,” said Reynolds.
“The community outpouring has been above and beyond. I haven’t seen anything like this in the Valley area,” said Jones.
If people are on the fence, organizer strongly suggest to apply, and if you’re approved, you do not have to accept the money.