After working on CSA farms for the past five years, we bought our own land and moved to Worcester in September, 2012. When we moved, we created an arrangement with our neighbor to use space in her barn since there were no existing buildings on our land. Through the fall and winter we used this space as hay, tool and equipment storage and as a workshop, and had plans to use it as our brooding space for chicks in the spring, and CSA pick-ups and events in the summer.
On the night of March 9th, we returned home to see an orange glow and smoke rising up from our hillside. In the 10 minutes it took the firetrucks to arrive, the entire barn was engulfed in flames. Three hours later, the firefighters put out the last of the fire, and we woke the next morning to a smoldering pile where the barn had once stood.
We lost all of our tools and equipment, as well as personal items. Thankfully, no animals were in the barn, and no people or animals were hurt. After totaling the cost of animal feed, electric fencing equipment, garden and field tools, building tools and materials, we came to a loss of $8000, plus another $3000 of personal items. The value of the space was also lost, and in order to move forward with our farm, we will need to rebuild a space that will replace the barn. This new building will be used for our CSA pick-up, wash-station, cold food storage, on-farm events, and have an attached shop and tool shed.
After we help our neighbor with the clean-up, we will be looking to quickly move forward on this building. Though we are still working on the design and estimated expenses, we anticipate a cost of at least $50,000 to re-build. We will be using part of the money to replace equipment lost in the fire, and the remainder will get us on our way toward re-building.
Thank you to all who support us through this time. Our mission is to strengthen our community, and we are humbled and grateful to feel the community come together and strengthen us.
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- Worcester Methodist Church
- Donald Hooper
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