ERIE, Pa. — GE Foundation members took money out of their own checks to help fire victims in Albion.
Members donated $15,000 to assist displaced residents and support the American Red Cross.
The executive director of the American Red Cross says they went through six months worth of the organization’s annual budget after a fire ripped through the Barnett Apartment building in Albion displacing nearly 70 people.
With 40 people still in temporary housing working to find a new home, GE Foundation members stepped in. As a surprise to the Red Cross, GE workers also donated a $5,500 check to support a campaign to put smoke detectors into homes.
GE foundation members said as soon as they heard the news about the fire they wanted to help.
“These funds actually come from payroll deduction that we take out of our checks every week to help the community and the less fortunate,” Rob Celeski said.
There are still 40residents in Albion in temporary housing. Those people are working with the housing authority to find permanent placements. Residents are still not allowed back into the Barnett Building at this time.
“We typically open up 100 cases in six months so this was over 70 in one month so it throws our budget way out with expenditures and it’s costly but a rewarding effort,” Pam Masi of the American Red Cross said.