- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 19, 2001

The outpouring of concern in the wake of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon has produced at least $200 million in private relief contributions, including $55 million donated over the Internet, President Bush said yesterday.
"Americans' love for America was channeled through our nation's great charities, and as president of this great land, nothing made me more proud," Mr. Bush said at a Rose Garden event yesterday.
Relief organizations have collected $55 million through their Web sites alone, said Mr. Bush, who encouraged more online giving.
He also singled out for praise a group of entrepreneurs in Springfield, Va., who, "in one of America's greatest traditions," raised $600 for the American Red Cross "by selling lemonade."
The level of giving in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks is extraordinarily generous, charity officials said.
The United Way of New York's September 11th Fund has received pledges of $89 million, including "$30 million in the last three days," said Charlotte Tomic, a volunteer spokeswoman for the fund. "That's unprecedented."
American Red Cross spokeswoman Devorah Goldburg said it had received $118 million in donations and pledges, nearly 40 percent of which came over the Internet.
Major pledges, according to news outlets, include $30 million from the Lilly Endowment, $20 million from Exxon Mobil, $15 million from Citigroup, $12 million from Coca-Cola, $11.3 million from AT&T; and $10 million each from General Electric Co., Microsoft and Pfizer Corp.
More high-profile fund raising is on the way: ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox are planning an unprecedented joint "telethon" Friday night to raise money for relief efforts.
Turner Network Television yesterday said it will host, with Yoko Ono and Ken Erlich Productions, a "Come Together" concert Oct. 2 in honor of John Lennon. The concert, to be held at Radio City Music Hall in Manhattan, will benefit relief efforts.
The need also is expected to be unparalleled: The National Association of Insurance Commissioners this week estimated that damage claims would exceed $20 billion more than in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew or the Northridge, Calif., earthquake.
Many donations already have been converted to services, spokesmen for charity groups said.
The Salvation Army has provided 500,000 meals in New York, the District and Pennsylvania since the Sept. 11 attacks, said Maj. George Hood, public affairs director at the organization's national headquarters. The army has collected at least $12 million in cash and checks to date, he added.
"We just cut a check for a quarter of a million dollars to send up there today" for families of victims, Pat Foster, director of development for the Salvation Army in New York, said yesterday. Asked what the money will fund, she answered: "When there is a need that can't be filled by any other agency, we fill that need, whatever it is."
Dozens of relief units have been at the Pentagon and in New York, providing 60,000 hot meals as well as hot showers and communication methods, said the Rev. Robert Reccord, president of the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Other groups are gearing up to deliver services that will be needed in the not-too-distant future.
Save the Children, which has raised $100,000 in recent days, expects to be involved in crisis counseling for children for many months, said spokeswoman Dianne Sherman.
Catholic Charities USA has received $1 million so far and expects to see more with the ongoing fund-raisers at parishes, said John Keightley. The donations will fund counseling, job training, and cash assistance and food pantries for needy families, he said, adding that "our niche is to fill in the gaps."

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