It is always devastating when a family experiences a loss such as a fire or flooding, but it was especially devastating for the four adults and ten children who were living at a residence on Neilson Street.

The Utica Fire Department responded to the multi-family residence on Neilson Street in Utica just before 2PM on Monday for reports of a structure fire there, according to the UFD Facebook page. The victims that have been impacted included four adults and ten children ranging in age from 1 to 16.

As they typically do with disasters like this, the local chapter of the American Red Cross arrived on the scene and immediately sprang into action to provide an array of assistance to those displaced by the blaze. Officials say volunteers provided financial assistance for necessities such as food, clothing and shelter.

In addition to providing necessary funds for recovery, the volunteers of the Red Cross also provided comfort kits that included personal items for the victims. The organization also provided stuffed animals for the children. Volunteers will continue to be available to assist these 14 displaced individuals moving forward.

As for the cause of the blaze, there is no information yet on a cause. If you'd like to assist the Red Cross in providing these services to disaster victims you can make a donation by visiting redcross.org or by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS. If you would like to be one of those volunteers to help victims of a disaster you can also visit redcross.org/volunteer. You will never believe the difference a helping hand outreached can make to someone experiencing such a tragedy.

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