Healing House delays plans of opening new gym after fire damages building, equipment

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Just 14 months after a blaze gutted its kitchen, a local nonprofit is repairing its building after an early morning fire Thursday.

Thankfully for Healing House, the fire didn't cause too much damage. Repair efforts have already started at the organization, which helps people with substance abuse problems.

But now, the owner has to delay her plans for the building.

Bobbi-Jo Reed said they were planning to open a new gym in the building damaged by the fire within the next month, but now they'll have to wait a little longer.

"You know when you get that call early in the morning, you freak out," Reed said.

Reed thinks the fire started under the stairs by a homeless person trying to keep warm.

The fire also spread to other parts of the building, causing some smoke damage in the clothing pantry -- a big part of their outreach efforts.

"My clothing closet is in the building where the fire happened," Healing House worker Casandra Hood said. "If we lost that, then I can't give back to the ones who come in with nothing."

Healing House is thankful for what they do have, and they're going to continue to give back to those in need.

"Grateful to God that it wasn't worse and, of course, nobody got hurt," Reed said. "It was basically contained to this out building."

On Thursday, workers filled an area under the stairs so no one can crawl underneath, hopefully preventing another fire from starting again.

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