Lifeline Center continues after fire - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Lifeline Center continues after fire

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250 kids visit this building every week, now there's not much left.

"They poured one million gallons of water, we lost the roof and basically the top floor," says Executive Director, Darrell Peterson.

The Lifeline Center was just one of three buildings on State Street, consumed by a weekend fire and Peterson has spent most of his day with insurance adjusters.

"I would say it's pretty close to a total loss."

There's not much of a building left, but Peterson says all programs WILL continue as usual.

"Right now it's an inconvenience, but the amazing thing is that the community has really rallied behind us." Schools, churches, and other community centers have offered facilities for Lifeline to use.

"We're not postponing anything. That just goes to show it's not about just a building," says Peterson.

"We're more than just a building, we're going to continue being in the community," says Lifeline Elementary Director, Caleb Stanton.

That may be challenging without a building, but these guys say it's not impossible.

"We're definitely going to have to be more creative on how we run our programs," says Stanton.

They're making it work for now but, "We'd love to rebuild right here, I would say that's the plan right now," says Peterson.

"People are excited about the potential we have to rebuild and make it bigger and better," says Stanton.

And they want to stay in the same spot.

"This is a great area. The kids we service are all within walking distances," says Peterson.

Lifeline wants to stay in the community, continuing to offer after school programs and family nights with free meals.

"I was standing here and you had people from in their 70's to in their teens, stopping by, grabbing a brick and taking it with them. Just to have a little piece of Lifeline with them."

With or without a building, Lifeline will still be a big part of Elkhart.

For follow updates on changes to programs and locations at the Lifeline Center click here.

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