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Groups gather aid for fire victims

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Residents of southern Denton County can assist their fellow Texans this weekend by donating items to the victims of the massive wildfires in Bastrop County, TX, southeast of Austin.

The fire, which started on September 4 and is still not fully contained, has consumed 34,068 acres and destroyed over 1,500 homes, according to the Bastrop County Office of Emergency Management.

Hope for the Hungry, in coordination with Bastrop Bible Church, Gateway Church in Austin and Bastrop Christian Ministerial Alliance, will conduct a fire relief collection at Sigma Signs and Printing, located at 1992 Justin Road in Highland Village, from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Needs include: water, non-perishable food, baby food, pet food, new underwear, socks, new blankets, linens, pillows, toiletries, cosmetics, new toys, books, luggage, household goods, cleaning supplies, kitchen items, shovels, rakes, trash cans, trash bags, small tools and work gloves.

At this time clothing is not in high demand, as many of the victims are moving into temporary housing and donation facilities have generously received clothing donations.

Sigma Signs and Printing, RE/MAX Cross Country, Home Instead Senior Care, Freedom Title of Texas, Our Attic Storage, North Texas RV Repair, The Cross Timbers Gazette and the Flower Mound Chamber of Commerce are helping with the collection.

Faith Lutheran Church in Flower Mound is also collecting items now through Sunday for families in need whose children attend Lost Pines Elementary School in Bastrop.

Lost Pines is the largest elementary school in the county and is located in a rural area. As of September 9th, 60 families and four teachers from the school had lost everything and that number is expected to rise.

Judi Talbot, daughter of Faith Lutheran Church member LaVonne Stokes, teaches at Lost Pines and will be coming to the church this weekend to collect the donations and take them back to the school.

Faith Lutheran Church is located at 6000 Morris Rd.in Flower Mound. Call 972-691-5491 with questions.

For more information on the Hope for the Hungry collection, contact Jeff Pedigo at jpedigo@hopeforthehungry.org or call 214-680-7124.

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