100 Days After The Grenfell Tower Fire, Here's How Millions Of Pounds Of Public Donations Are Being Spent
"Every penny raised by the British Red Cross for the London Fire Relief Fund will go to the surviving victims of the Grenfell disaster and their families," the chief executive of the British Red Cross said.
A further £5.5 million of funds raised from public donations will now be distributed to survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire, the British Red Cross and K&C Foundation announced on Thursday.
New grants will be made available to the 165 households affected by the fire, with £15,000 being given to the 139 households from Grenfell Tower and £8,000 to go to the 26 households in nearby Grenfell Walk.
It is the first time residents from Grenfell Walk are receiving funds from the British Red Cross appeal, although those residents have previously accessed funds from other organisations.
Survivors who are bereaved will receive additional funding, with £20,000 for each deceased victim on top of £40,000 already provided through the London Emergencies Trust. Those who were hospitalised for a week or more will receive an additional £5,000 as they get on with the challenge of rebuilding their lives.
Mike Adamson, chief executive of the British Red Cross, said in a statement: “We have always said that every penny raised by the British Red Cross for the London Fire Relief Fund will go to the surviving victims of the Grenfell disaster and their families. Today we’re announcing how the next phase of funds raised will be distributed by the London Emergencies Trust, to help those most in need.
"Through the London Emergencies Trust, we are now going to top up the funds provided to the bereaved and seriously injured and extend funding to the 165 households in the Tower and the Walk who were affected by the fire."
In the first phase, released in August, £4.8 million of public donations were distributed.
David Holdsworth, the registrar of charities in England and Wales, told BuzzFeed News that further funds are being made available for those affected by the tragedy.
"We are pleased that independent charities are working together with the community in the best interests of those affected to make further funds available," he said. "We will continue to work with the charities, survivors, and those affected in the coming weeks.”
The British Red Cross also revealed that its London Fire Relief Fund has contributed a total of £6.2 million of all the money raised. This includes £150,000 raised from 66 tonnes of second-hand items that were donated by the public and sold through British Red Cross charity shops.
Up to 41 tonnes of brand-new clothes and new items that were donated by the public were distributed to survivors and those affected by the fire.
The announcement comes on the same day MPs Sajid Javid and Nick Hurd wrote to survivors and local residents as the community prepares to mark 100 days since the tragedy.
Javid revealed that housing minister Alok Sharma intends to spend time speaking to people living in social housing across the country, starting off with the Lancaster West estate, where Grenfell Tower sits.
"While we know it cannot undo what has happened, we both want to ensure every
lesson is learnt and ensure something like this never happens again," the letter read.
The letter also revealed that plans to cover up the building, the sight of which is said to cause residents distress, will take longer than expected because of ongoing police investigations.
At a briefing for journalists at Scotland Yard on Tuesday, Commander Stuart Cundy said his estimate of 80 victims might be higher than the actual figure. "I still think it will be about 80, but it might be a little bit less than 80," Cundy said.
Police also revealed that several cases of fraud are being investigated in relation to the tower. Cundy said eight cases are being investigated involving people who claimed to be in the tower on the evening of the fire and tried to access the grants available to survivors and the families of victims.