A fire at the Comfort Child and Youth Care Centre in Kokstad, KZN, caused partial damage and injuries to some of the children at the centre. The facility houses 44 children.
The fire broke out on Wednesday night and caused four children to collapse on the scene due to smoke inhalation. KZN Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza ordered an immediate investigation to determine the cause of the fire. She said that four children were rushed to hospital for smoke inhalation but only three were admitted for continued observation. Khoza said that the circumstances of the fire were not yet known. Staff at the facility managed to evacuate all the children and relocated them to a nearby centre. “We find comfort that there were no lives lost in this unfortunate incident at the centre. We are very concerned by this incident. The destruction of property meant to provide shelter to vulnerable children is really unfortunate,” Khoza said. “We have directed management of the department to ensure that this incident is properly investigated,” she continued.
“We are grateful to the employees of the centre who ensured that there was no life lost. These employees had to face risks when they rescued our children. We send our gratitude to them for being front-line heroes.” A team of social workers have been assembled to assist with psychosocial support services to the affected children and staff of the centre. Khoza will be visiting the home and the victims in hospital on Thursday.