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DEC thanks two million donors as tsunami appeal fund rebuilds houses and schools

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Five months on from the Indian Ocean tsunami, the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) announced today that it is writing to thank more than two million people who donated to its tsunami appeal fund as work starts on major construction projects in the countries worst hit by the disaster.
Five months on from the Indian Ocean tsunami, the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) announced today that it is writing to thank more than two million people who donated to its tsunami appeal fund as work starts on major construction projects in the countries worst hit by the disaster.

In letters and emails, the DEC also informs donors that the appeal has now reached an unprecedented =A3350 million -- and that it is upping the funds allocated to its member agencies in the first year since the disaster to =A3152 million from =A3112 million.

"The UK public has created a =A3350 million fund, every penny of which will help to make a real difference," said Brendan Gormley, DEC Chief Executive. "This has become abundantly clear now the immediate emergency period is past and longer term work on rebuilding housing, schools and hospitals has started.

"Thanking donors is a mammoth task, but it is crucially important. People should know that their money is being spent wisely and well."

Brendan Gormley said the DEC had waited to receive information from an independent monitoring team before reporting back to donors, as it wanted to be sure that the money was being put to good use. First reports from the monitoring team indicate that agencies are responding exceptionally well to the disaster.

The DEC is also taking advantage of this mailing to follow up questions on Gift Aid with phone donors, Brendan Gormley said. Gift Aid means charities can claim an extra 28p from the government for every pound they receive, but phone donors must consent to this in writing. HM Revenue and Customs agreed last month that the DEC could combine a letter requesting this with a letter thanking donors for their contribution.

Notes to Editors

1. For more information contact the DEC press office on 020 7387 0200. / www.dec.org.uk

2. The DEC unites the leading independent humanitarian agencies in their efforts to maximise income from the people across the UK 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, Islamic Relief, Merlin, Oxfam, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision.