TWIN FALLS — Rock Creek Elementary School is helping two of its families who were displaced by a duplex fire Thursday night.
In total, six children are affected — three of whom attend the school.
“We’re trying to coordinate with the families to figure out what they need,” Rock Creek school counselor Sarah Pehrson said Monday.
Items have been donated to both families, Pehrson said, including from local businesses and anonymous donors. The Twin Falls Optimist Club has donated winter coats, hats and mittens.
“Everyone has just really come together to help these families out,” she said.
Many of the donations are coming in for the younger children, said Twin Falls School District spokeswoman Eva Craner, but she noted that the older children are without necessary items too.
Donations of clothing and shoes are needed for a middle school-aged girl.
In lieu of donating food to the families, gift cards are a useful substitute.
“Gift cards would be great,” Craner said. “Then the kids can go get things they like.”
The displaced families are living with family members and friends, but once they find a new home, the types of donations they’ll need may change.
Donations from community members are welcome to help the families with establishing a new home.
“Anything they can do to help is awesome,” Pehrson said.
The fire started Thursday night after occupants of 911 Arrow Wood Court — the south side of the duplex — were draining fuel out of a vehicle gas tank inside the garage, Twin Falls Fire Battalion Chief Brian Cunningham told the Times-News on Friday.
There weren’t any injuries, but damage to the building was extensive.
Brandi Bradford, who lived on the other side of the duplex, was in labor Thursday night at the hospital when she found out her house was burning down.
Just five hours after the fire started, her fourth child — a baby girl, Lydia — was born at 1:34 a.m. Friday at St. Luke’s Magic Valley Medical Center.
Friends have set up an online GoFundMe page to help Bradford, her fiancée Chris Zamora, and four children: 12-year-old Alexa, 7-year-old Talon, nearly 4-year-old Chris Jr. and newborn Lydia.
The American Red Cross has also reached out to both families displaced by the fire to provide assistance.
Bradford and her family didn’t have renter’s insurance. They lost everything, including brand new baby items like a car seat and bassinet.