By Laura Michell
The Hume community is rallying around a Greenvale family after their house was destroyed by fire late last month.
Zena Arab, her husband Mustapha and their kids are living with family following the fire at their rental house on the afternoon of July 28.
Ms Arab said the fire started in her four-year-old daughter’s room. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.
“The fire alarm went off … I pulled a chair over to turn it off and I saw smoke on the roof. I walked towards the bedroom and saw a massive fire in my daughter’s room,” she said.
“I was screaming … by the time I saw it, it was really big.”
Ms Arab said she quickly grabbed the kids and ran out of the house before calling triple-0.
She then knocked on the doors of her next-door neighbours to alert them to the fire.
“The kids didn’t even have shoes on … within five minutes, the whole house had burnt.
“If it wasn’t for the fire alarm, I reckon we would have been stuck in the house. It burnt so fast.”
Ms Arab said her kids, aged nine, four and two, were coping as well as could be expected following the fire, although they missed their toys.
Her brother, Wesam, started a GoFundMe fundraiser to help the family with the cost of finding somewhere to live and buying new clothes and furniture.
Within the first three days, more than $5000 had been raised.
“It is so heartwarming,” Ms Arab said.
“The other day I just sat down and cried … I wasn’t expecting that.”
To donate, visit: www.gofundme.com/f/fire-relief-for-my-sister-and-her-children.