NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A fundraising effort is underway for the victims of Sunday's deadly Bronx high-rise fire.
From personal donations to help from disaster relief organizations, support has been pouring in from across the city and beyond, CBS2's Christina Fan reported.
As the small Gambian community in the Bronx grieved an unimaginable loss of life, a city of diverse immigrants reminded them Monday that they are not alone in their grief.
"I want to do my part to help out and bring in donations," Beverly Taylor said.
"This is a tragedy. It's not just for the African community but for New York City," another person said.
From Monroe College to the Alden Hotel, an endless stream of good Samaritans showed up with cars packed to the brim with food and clothing. Organizations like ICNA Relief pledged long-term financial support, while volunteers with the Gambian Youth Organization were touched to learn their GoFundMe page for victims raised $500,000 in a day.
"Now we know that people really care. The support we got, it has changed and make us feel that everybody is connected," Salim Drammeh said.
Prayers also filled a mosque just a few blocks away on Webster Avenue.
Many of the residents, originally from The Gambia, worship there and came for solace after the tragic fire, CBS2's Nick Caloway reported.
"I opened the door. I see the smoke everywhere," Tijan Janneh said.
Janneh and his family fled their sixth-floor apartment in a frenzy, but they were overwhelmed by thick smoke and got separated.
Janneh made it out, but said that his 27-year-old daughter, Sere, died in the fire.
Another one of his daughters was critically injured.
"Today is a sad day for us," Janneh said.
Imam Musa Kabba said at least half of the people who died in the fire attend the mosque. Religious groups, charities and regular New Yorkers have been dropping off food and supplies for the victims.
"But I believe the support of the members, the rabbis, the pastors, and the police department, their coming here makes me stronger. I know that I'm not alone," Kabba said.
And for Janneh, even on his darkest day he has hope in his heart.
"We can't do anything, just to pray. Pray for them. Pray [for] who lost their loved ones. May God bless all of us," Janneh said.
City leaders on Monday announced the creation of a task force to connect victims with emergency services and emotional support. They also pledged to help families with housing.
"We will guarantee that you will have a permanent home, whether it's here at Twin Parks or elsewhere in the Bronx," Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson said.
Support also came through the form of prayer.
At the foot of the doomed apartment complex, religious leaders held a vigil for the 17 lives lost inside. Timothy Cardinal Dolan was among the many who paused to pay his respects.
"It was really, really bad … I dropped on my knees and started to pray to God… 'God, please help us,'" resident Tysena Jacobs said.
The fire may have mostly affected one community, but New Yorkers are letting those families know the loss was universal.
Several funeral homes are also offering free services for families. For more information, contact the Crisis Action Center.
In addition, the Salvation Army New York Division has set up the Bronx Fire Relief Fund and is encouraging the community to give to support those families impacted by the fire. To contribute, anyone can text the word "bronxfire" to 41444 for a link to make a donation.
CBS2's Nick Caloway contributed to this report.
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