The Alliance, Houston nonprofit organization, hit by copper thieves

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ABC13's Mayra Moreno reports on a Houston nonprofit suffering a setback after copper thieves break in to its chiller unit.

The Alliance, a community-based nonprofit organization that helps refugees, immigrants and others, is being forced to operate in the heat after thieves targeted its air conditioning unit.

Surveillance video shows one of the thieves walking behind the building, and then he's seen climbing over a concrete wall making his way to the chiller unit.

"It was quite clear they seem to know," said Dan Stoecker, CEO of The Alliance. "They scoped it (out), figured it out...people had stripped out all the copper."

Several dozen copper coils were gone.

"They took sledgehammers," Stoecker explained how the heist happened.

Stoecker never imagined he would have to protect the group's 1968-model chiller unit, which sends cold air throughout the entire building.

On Wednesday, the hundreds of people it helps daily had to endure the heat.

"They're coming into a hot building. We gotta figure out how to get this, so we can serve the community because so many people come in," he said.

The Alliance relies on donations to give back, and this type of setback is something they can't afford.

"We have to get this fixed and get security, which is an additional expense," he said. "This would be tens of thousands, probably."

Stoecker is not only hoping the thieves get caught, but maybe someone out there will step up to help them fix the unit.

If you would like to help, you can email Stoecker.

For more information on the organization, you can visit The Alliance website here.

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