UPDATED 3:50 P.M. SUNDAY
TRURO – A weekend fire at a Harris Avenue daycare has displaced about 55 children and 11 staff.
Pat Roberts, who has been operating the Mount Pleasant Nursery School since 1977, is expecting to have a temporary space as of Tuesday.
“I’m overwhelmed by all the support, from past parents to current parents,” said Roberts, less than 36 hours after an early morning fire damaged about half the building, with smoke and heat damage throughout.
“Both the Immanuel Baptist Church and John Calvin Christian Reformed Church have offered us space.”
As far as space goes, Roberts said the Immanuel Baptist Church on Young and Glenwood could be a good fit for the daycare and she hopes to have it licensed early Monday.
“They just put on a new addition that’s used for all the age groups we look after. One of the members of the church works for Community Services and used to be a licensing officer. She went through all the rooms with me (Sunday) and said the licensing officer could probably license it pretty quickly,” she said.
“My main concern is getting a space because a lot of our parents are students that travel from out of town and have no back-up care.”
The fire was called in at about 4 a.m. Saturday. No one was home in the building at the time, as it’s only used as a daycare.
“We’re lucky there wasn’t anybody living there,” said Roberts. “It was all checked as of 6 p.m. Friday, so we’re a little confused as to how it happened.”
An electrical engineer was being brought in to assist with the investigation through the insurance company.
“The cause is undetermined, there’s no indication of arson,” said Truro Fire Service inspector Ryan Thibeau. “It’s still under investigation.”
After Roberts met with officials at the Immanuel Baptist Church, she met with the 10 staff members.
“We managed to retrieve all of the parent contacts from the groups, and the staff are contacting all the parents,” she said. “They may be without daycare on Monday, but we’re hoping to have space by Tuesday, and then we plan on rebuilding.”
- with files from Monique Chiasson