A security guard ensures tenants are escorted in and out of a rooming house at 1114 Rockland Ave. Wednesday. The building suffered extensive damage early Monday morning from a fire that began on the upper floors.

UPDATE: Salvation Army welcomes Victoria fire victims

People displaced after Rockland Avenue fire can live at downtown shelter until July 1

Nine of the 16 people displaced from a Monday morning fire will be able to stay at a downtown Victoria shelter until they can find new accommodation.

The Salvation Army made room for victims of the June 24 fire – which destroyed a 20-unit rooming house at 1114 Rockland Ave. – at its downtown addictions and rehabilitation centre.

The City of Victoria’s emergency management program will cover rooming and food costs for the victims through provincial funding until July 1, said Kyla Ferns, Salvation Army communications officer.

“We are going to work with (the victims) to help them find suitable accommodation now that their home is uninhabitable,” Ferns said.

If the victims can’t find appropriate housing by Monday, Salvation Army will allow them to stay and continue to provide support, she added.

“If additional funding has not been secured, then the Salvation Army will cover the costs associated with the additional shelter, food and other resources.”

Rob Johns, City of Victoria emergency co-ordinator, said the program typically provides immediate funding for up to 72 hours for lodging, food and a change of clothing.

Speaking in general terms, Johns said non-profit agencies typically get involved after that 72-hour period.

“Our team will be working with other community groups to find accommodation for these people as they start to rebuild their lives,” Ferns said.

dpalmer@vicnews.com

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