Generous start for Darfur appeal

Disasters Emergency Committee chief executive Brendan Gormley has praised the "outpouring of generosity" from the public after the committee's Darfur crisis appeal raised £2m on its first night last Thursday.

Mike Lake, chief executive of Help the Aged (left), Hany El Banna, director of Islamic Relief (middle), and TV presenter Claudia Winkleman answer phones at the launch of the DEC’s Darfur appeal. Photo: Rachel Palmer/Save the Children
Mike Lake, chief executive of Help the Aged (left), Hany El Banna, director of Islamic Relief (middle), and TV presenter Claudia Winkleman answer phones at the launch of the DEC’s Darfur appeal. Photo: Rachel Palmer/Save the Children

The campaign, launched with television trailers featuring actress Joanna Lumley and journalist Feargal Keane, is aimed at helping the 4.5 million people affected by the conflict in Darfur, Chad and the Central African Republic.

Gormley said: "DEC agencies are doing all we can to respond to real human suffering on the ground right now, and we need to scale up our response before the rains arrive."

He said the average donation had been £50, which is enough to provide safe drinking water for 5,000 people.

The charities taking part in the appeal are the British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International UK, Christian Aid, Concern, Help the Aged, Islamic Relief, Merlin, Oxfam, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision.

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