A Salvation Army in Collier County is closed Monday night just 12 days before Christmas after a fire broke out.
Greater Naples Fire told WINK News the fire started outside the building around 2:30 p.m. on Monday and began moving inside.
They put it out quickly, but there was a lot of smoke and structural damage at the scene.
All staff and kids were evacuated safely through, and nobody was hurt.
Most of the damage was contained in the food pantry area, so, unfortunately, a lot of food donations are probably damaged.
Crews at the scene of the fire. CREDIT: WINK News
But all money donated to the Red Kettles, as well as toy donations, are offsite and unharmed.
The Salvation Army told WINK News the fire is undoubtedly an inconvenience, but it’s not taking away from its holiday spirit.
Captain Ben Bridges is the commanding officer for the Salvation Army of Collier County and spoke with WINK News about what happened.
“Obviously, this is not the best time for the Salvation Army to be impacted by something like this. But we are committed to continuing to serve all those in the community. So this will not deter us from Thursday and Friday serving over 6,000 children here in collier county with all the toys the community has been collecting. We are still here. We are committed to doing the most good for the most people,” Captain Bridges said.
Greater Naples Fire told WINK News the building will remain closed for at least 24 hours.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.