NORTH BROOKFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) – Dozens of students and staff members were without shelter Friday night as a fire ripped through a dormitory at a North Brookfield school, but as the school is picking through the ashes, the community is coming together to pick them up as well.
It was just before 7 p.m. Friday when the fire broke out at the Valley View School. More than 150 firefighters from throughout the region responded to the blaze.
In all, 25 students and 8 faculty members were safely evacuated from the dormitory and while they have been displaced, they have not been forgotten by the community.
“Everybody has reached out to say what can we do? What do you need? We’ve had boxes and boxes of clothing and towels and toiletries, from people who know us and people who don’t know us,” said Rick Bulger, Associate Director at Valley View School. ”So many people just pouring out prayers and concern for us. It’s been overwhelming to be honest.”
On Friday, the Red Cross brought in cots for those who wouldn’t have a place to sleep. The school relocated students to another dormitory and other buildings on campus.
“Currently, we are trying to find other accommodations potentially a hotel or something like that for the time being,” explained Bulger.
Valley View has every intention of rebuilding the dormitory which was lost Friday night. But for now they have a message for the community that’s come together to support them.
“We are eternally grateful for the outpouring we’ve seen in such a short period of time. It’s just been amazing that people want to give time and energy and their own belongings and clothes. It’s just been amazing to see,” said Bulger.
Valley View School is a small, private boarding school that provides a therapeutic environment for boys between the ages of 11 and 16.