Flood appeal update
THE Australian Red Cross has distributed funds to more than 30,000 people affected by floods in southeast Queensland and northern New South Wales (as of 9am Monday 18 April).
*33,939 financial assistance grants of $500 to households to help with basic needs for people whose primary place of residence was affected by the floods and who are experiencing financial hardship as a result.
*21 bereavement grants of $20,000 to senior next-of-kin of people who died as a direct result of the floods, to help with funeral and related expenses.
Red Cross Acting Director of Australian Programs Garry Page said all grants were going to people in Federal Government designated disaster areas.
“We have distributed $17.4 million so far and with thousands of applications yet to be processed, we are approaching the point at which funds available will be fully subscribed. When this occurs, we will stop accepting new applications, so we don’t have people applying for grants that aren’t available,” Mr Page said.
“These grants are a result of extraordinary support for our March telethon hosted by broadcasters Nine, Seven and Ten, which raised more than $26 million.
“This financial assistance is a gift from the Australian people, and 100 per cent of the funds raised from the Telethon will go on cash grants.”
Mr Page said a team of 60 people had been processing tens of thousands of grant applications, working seven days a week, including over Easter, to process grants as quickly as possible.
About 50,000 applications are still being processed, although some will not be eligible due to being duplicates, incomplete, from areas that are not disaster-declared, or for other reasons.
“If you have already applied, then there’s no need to do anything unless you are asked for more information.
“Red Cross thanks networks Nine, Seven and Ten and each person and organisation who donated to the telethon or to our appeal (Qld and NSW Floods Appeal | Australian Red Cross). Donations have provided financial support for tens of thousands of people who really need help at a very challenging time in their lives.”