The St Vincent de Paul Society has assured Australians that every dollar raised for the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal will be used to support the people affected by the fires.
In a statement released yesterday, the St Vincent de Paul Society said, “Vinnies will not, and has never kept funds from disaster appeals for any other work or cause”.
“During the bushfire crisis, Vinnies volunteers are on the ground in hundreds of communities across the country, helping people as they deal with the immediate aftermath of fires. Our volunteers live and work in the impacted communities and will stay alongside those people affected for the long months of recovery ahead.
“Vinnies has from day one been in communities providing assistance from our own funds and over the past three weeks has been actively distributing assistance from the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal. This includes financial packages; essential items such as food, water, clothing and bedding; and emotional support for those affected by the bushfires.”
To date, the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal has raised $12.5 million to support people affected by bushfires in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and the ACT.
The charity said it had distributed more than $2.4 million nationally with a further $250,000 already processed for distribution in the coming days.
Vinnies said significant amounts of material goods including food, water, clothing and bedding had also been distributed.
“The process of assessing people and establishing their need does take some time but we are focused on helping as many people as possible as quickly as we can. As we access more communities and establish need, we are also accelerating the rate of response,” the statement said.
“No administration fees are taken from this appeal, meaning the money raised goes directly to the relief and recovery effort.
“Vinnies is focused on doing what it has always done - assist people to rebuild their lives as they re-establish their homes, their livelihoods and their spirit. We will provide assistance now and during the difficult months ahead for those people who have lost everything.”
A special collection will be taken in Catholic parishes throughout the country this Australia Day weekend for the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal.
Vinnies confirms every cent will go to bushfire victims (St Vincent de Paul Society)
Bushfires: Charities hit back at critical MPs (The Australian)
Church responds with prayer and action (CathNews)