NEWS
02/24/2019 16:50 EST | Updated 02/24/2019 16:50 EST

Syrian Refugee Family Of 8 Flees House Fire In Fredericton

The family's children range in ages from three to 14.

Perry Gerenday via Getty Images
A house fire in Fredericton has destroyed the home of a refugee family from Syria.

A Syrian family of eight was forced to flee their burning home in Fredericton Saturday morning. The fire came less than a week after a house fire in Halifax claimed the lives of seven children also from a Syrian refugee family.

According to Platoon Capt. Mike Mizner, fire crews were called to a bungalow on Fredericton's north side around 11:30 a.m. The house was completely engulfed in flames, but all eight people who lived in the house were gathered outside by the time the crews arrived.

Mizner says firefighters remained at the home until about 2 p.m. That's the time a funeral was beginning for the seven children of a Syrian refugee couple who died Tuesday in Halifax.

The Fredericton family escaped unharmed, although there was severe damage to their home's main floor as well as the attic, according to Global News. The cause is still under investigation.

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Midya Bda, the 30-year-old mother, told CTV Atlantic she's relieved the fire wasn't worse. "We are very happy that everybody's safe," she said, speaking through an interpreter.

Global News reports that the family also includes Bda's 35-year-old husband and their six children, aged 14, 13, 12, eight, six and three.

"My children are OK, no harm for them, and we are very, very thankful for our community, for the Multicultural Association of Fredericton," Bda also told CTV.

Intesar Saeed of the Multicultural Association of Fredericton said the family is staying with another Syrian family, according to Global. The group is accepting clothing and food donations on behalf of the family, who lost their belongings in the fire.

Donations are welcome, Bda told CTB, because "we came outside our home with nothing."

With files from The Canadian Press

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