BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Buffalo Peacemakers are asking for help after a devastating fire destroyed their building in January.
“We thought it can’t be our building and we found out it was ours, which was devastating because they were 80 percent finished with that particular property for the center,” said Pastor James Giles President of Back to Basics Ministries.
The group started a GoFund Me to rebuild the former drug house on 79 Kilhoffer St. that Habitat for Humanity was rehabbing into a community center. The center was originally scheduled to open this summer with hopes it would be a place to “bridge the gap” and spread positivity in the community.
“It was going to be a hub that the community could come to and get some answers resolved,” Giles said.
Those plans went up in smoke when police say arson by an incendiary device that caused $80,000 in damage to the structure and $75,000 in damage to a home next door.
“Why would you burn down a building where we care for other people and they could stay there and survive like why would you burn it down?” said junior peacemaker Jahnira Jackson.
Despite the setback, Giles says they will continue to make their presence known in the neighborhood and fight for their community.
“We were not disswayed about building over here. This still is our area, we’re still concerned about this area and we have not been deterred by the fire. It only served to galvanize us, make us stronger and more committed.”
You can donate to the rebuild by making a deposit out to Buffalo Peacemakers for Bailey Green Fund at any Keybank.