Starting Over After a House Fire

On Tuesday, January 16th, 2018, a house fire destroyed my friend Sabrina's childhood home. I am so thankful to be able to say that Sabrina's mom survived the fire and was treated only for smoke inhalation on the scene. Sadly, her three animals did not make it out of the fire that quickly filled the entire structure with thick black smoke.  

Due to the extent of the fire, water, and smoke damage, the house is completely uninhabitable and will likely need to be torn down. Everything inside, every memory, every article of clothing, was destroyed. Worse, the house was not insured.


This news would be enough to shake any 28-year-old, but Sabrina's circumstances are very different than what many of us have been lucky enough to enjoy. Sabrina's mom, Vicki, was diagnosed with ALS in 1996, and when Sabrina's dad unexpectedly passed away without life insurance in 2011, Sabrina became the primary financial caretaker for Vicki. This year, thankfully, Vicki's diagnosis changed from ALS to MMN, but she is still unable to work and lives on a very modest disability income, which Sabrina supplements with her salary as a public servant. Sabrina pays for things that Vicki's disability income doesn't cover, like her taxes, her cell-phone bill, and other incidental expenses for gas, shoes, etc. Now, she would like to help her rebuild her life.


This is not a responsibility that a young person should have to take on completely alone. As a community we can come together and help Sabrina and Vicki resettle. We have already sourced out a few living options, and one thing that is being considered is the purchase of a new or used mobile home that we can put on the property. We also need to find out if the home will legally need to be torn down, which online estimators say would likely cost around $15,000.00

In addition, we will need to furnish the home and replace everything, including a cellphone and clothing, as Vicki left the house without even a winter coat.

GoFundMe takes 2.9% of the total donated and .30 on every transaction, and the gift will likely be taxed. If we can raise $30,000 for Sabrina and Vicki to rebuild, that should provide them with enough money to furnish a new home and start rebuilding. 

What We Need:

-Financial Assistance
-Down Payment Towards a Home
-Financial Counseling Support
-Demolition Services
-Connections to Organizations for Persons With Disabilities/People Living with ALS/MMN
-Furniture

If you have the ability to give, please do. If you can offer services or counseling of some kind, please share it with us. And if you can do neither, please send this to your friends, co-workers, or relatives. Life is good and this is not a stopping point for Sabrina and Vicki, only a change in circumstances. Let's help them get through it by making sure that they are not doing it alone. 

Thank you.

** For those who have asked where to mail support, please use the following address:

Victoria Bierer
c/o Karen Appleby
1243 Orchard Lane
Ligonier, PA 15658

Donations ()

  • Ross Mazer 
    • $50 
    • 23 mos
  • Claire Kinnen 
    • $50 
    • 26 mos
  • Sean Mulvihill 
    • $10 
    • 26 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 27 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 27 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Johnna Scrabis 
Organizer
New Alexandria, PA
Sabrina Bierer 
Beneficiary
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