Tsunami Fund Reaches £300 Million As Appeal Closes

25/02/2005

The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) said today that donations by the British public to its tsunami earthquake appeal fund have reached an unprecedented £300 million – and announced that the Appeal will close on 26 February 2005, the two-month anniversary of the tsunami disaster.

DEC Chief Executive Brendan Gormley said: “The British public have been amazing. We want to thank every single person who has donated. They have responded to one of the world’s worst natural disasters by creating a £300 million fund that will make a real and lasting difference to survivors for years to come.

“We will spend this money wisely and well. The scale of the disaster means that the relief effort is a complex challenge and it will be years before many people reach a decent standard of living. We will regularly report back on progress.”

The DEC has already allocated over £100 million for the first phase of disaster relief and rehabilitation. Life-saving emergency aid and longer-term work rebuilding lives and livelihoods are benefiting hundreds of thousands of people in all areas from Indonesia to Somalia.

The DEC aims to process all donations by the middle of March.

The tsunami revealed that the poorest people often suffer most when natural disasters strike so donors might now want to support the MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY campaign (www.makepovertyhistory.org) to tackle global poverty.

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

The DEC unites the leading independent humanitarian agencies in their efforts to maximise income from the British public to mount an effective humanitarian response to major disasters overseas. Its members are: ActionAid, British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International UK, Christian Aid, Concern, Help the Aged, Merlin, Oxfam, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision.