A fire that started just before 2 AM Tuesday has left five families homeless. 

Within minutes of finding out about what happened, Theresa Buker – who runs Free Stuff 4 Daily Needs on Facebook – got to work organizing a fundraiser and a place for clothes to be dropped off. As of 9:30 AM, over $400 has already been raised through a Facebook fundraiser and Buker says clothing has been donated as well. 

She tells the MyMuskokaNow.com newsroom she will stop at the multi-unit building on First Street South in Gravenhurst this morning to see what the needs of the children involved are. 

The fire was put out by 8 AM, but as of 10 AM members of the Gravenhurst Fire Department remain on scene as an investigation into the blaze is underway. Fire officials are asking everyone to avoid the area around 575 First Street South.

Buker says they need clothes for adult men and women, as well as boys size 12 and seven. Towels, toothpaste, toothbrushes, hairbrushes, stuff for shaving, deodorant, hair products and soap are also needed. She says to not donate furniture at this time. “Today, let’s deal with immediate shock and trauma and what they need today to get through to tomorrow,” Buker says.

Buker says this isn’t the first time she’s had to help people displaced by a fire. “Sometimes their needs are veery immediate and personal,” she explains. In these situations, often the best thing to give the people involved is cash or gift cards because it allows them to buy what they need right away. Right now, Buker says the needs for the families involved are pretty basic: clothing and toiletries.

If you want to donate clothing or toiletries, drop-off points have been set up at 375 Muskoka Beach Road in Gravenhurst and 23 Lankin Avenue in Bracebridge. You can also email [email protected] to set up another way to donate. 

This story will be updated…