International Development Secretary Priti Patel visits DEC offices as appeal funds reach £24 million.

20/03/2017

International Development Secretary Priti Patel today visited the offices of the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) in Euston to meet aid workers from six of its member charities recently returned from the crisis areas.

Aid workers from CAFOD, CARE International, Christian Aid, Oxfam, Plan International UK and Tearfund discussed the impact of the generous donations of the British public, UK Aid and the life-saving work that the DEC’s 13 member charities carry out on the ground.

Ms Patel also met with volunteers working on the appeal, including those taking phone calls from donors.

Ms Patel said:

“I’m delighted to be here at the DEC appeal’s headquarters today where so far, thanks to the generosity of the British public, we have helped to raise £24 million for the East Africa Crisis Appeal.

“I’ve met the amazing team at the DEC, volunteers and some inspiring aid workers who have just come back from South Sudan and Somalia.

“My plea is very simple: don’t delay, please donate and the UK government will double what you give up to £10 million.”

Drought and conflict have left 16 million people on the brink of starvation and in urgent need of food, water and medical treatment.

People are already dying in South Sudan and Somalia. In Kenya, the government has declared a national emergency and Ethiopia is battling a new wave of drought following the strongest El Niño on record.

DEC member charities are already providing help to people across the four countries with lifesaving aid, such as food, treatment for malnutrition and cash, but much more needs to be done to reach those in desperate need.

The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) appeal for the crisis in East Africa has raised £24 million since it launched on Wednesday, with donations continuing to flood in from the UK public.

DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed said:

“Our East Africa Crisis Appeal has now raised a staggering £24 million thanks to the generosity of the British public, my heartfelt thanks to everyone who has donated so far.

“I also want to thank the UK government for recognising the urgent needs across East Africa and supporting the appeal by committing to £10 million match funding.

“More than 16 million people are on the brink of starvation and people are dying across East Africa. This humanitarian crisis has reached critical levels and we would urge people to continue giving to save lives and reduce suffering.”

What your money could buy:

  • £25 could provide a month’s supply of life-saving peanut paste to a malnourished child
  • £60 could provide clean drinking water for two families for a month
  • £100 could provide supplies to a clinic treating severely malnourished children for a week.

To make a donation to the DEC East Africa Crisis Appeal visit: www.dec.org.uk, call the 24-hour hotline on 0370 60 60 610, donate over the counter at any high street bank or post office, or send a cheque. You can also donate £5 by texting the word SUPPORT to 70000.

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Notes to editors:

Media enquiries please call 020 7387 0200 or 07930 999 014 (out of hours).

  • The DEC brings 13 leading UK aid charities together in times of crisis: ActionAid, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide, Islamic Relief, Oxfam, Plan International UK, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision; all collectively raising money to reach those in need quickly.
  • Matt Baker, Brenda Blethyn, Tamsin Greig, Bill Nighy and Eddie Redmayne have backed the DEC’s East Africa Crisis Appeal by recording calls for support from the public.
  • The UK Government is matching pound for pound the first £10 million donated by the public to the DEC East Africa Crisis Appeal through its Aid Match Fund.
  • Donations can be made at any high street bank and at Post Office counters. To make a postal donation make cheques payable to ‘DEC’ and mail to ‘PO Box 999, London, EC3A 3AA’. 
  • To donate £5 by text send the word SUPPORT to 70000. The full £5 will go to the DEC East Africa Crisis Appeal. Donors must be 16 years or over and have bill payers’ permission. Texts are free and donations will be added to the bill.