At least 165 people have been confirmed dead after last week's floods, Source: City of Ghent

Ghent starts crowdfunding campaign for victims of the flood

Ghent starts crowdfunding campaign for victims of the flood

The initiative was set up after concerned citizens started calling the city, asking how can they help

The City of Ghent set up a funding campaign on 16 July, where people can donate in support of the victims of last week’s flash floods in the heart of Europe. The move came after citizens and businesses started contacting the city with questions about what they can do to help alleviate the situation. To top it all off, Ghent itself will make a substantial contribution to the campaign.

Flash floods cause a spontaneous outburst of solidarity

With images from the floods and the destruction they left behind touching people across Europe, many Ghent residents and companies spontaneously contacted the city with questions about how they can support the victims of the flood.  

To channel this Ghent solidarity, the City decided to set up a crowdfunding campaign with the goal of 100,000 euros. Up until today, the campaign has raised over two-thirds of the total sum, at around 68,000 euros.

The City has pledged to also make a substantial contribution, based on the amount collected, and will transfer the total amount to the competent authorities.

Mayor Mathias De Clerq was quoted in a press release, saying: “The images we have seen speak volumes. Ghent and the people of Ghent want to do their part to help those affected. The solidarity is great.”

Rudy Coddens, Alderman of Social Policy and Finance added: “In times of disaster, coordinated solidarity is essential. As a city, we are taking the lead in this. We hope that many other cities and towns will follow. Water knows no municipal or regional boundaries, and neither does our solidarity.”

The flood of the century

Last week’s flash flood, affecting Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, and parts of Germany was hailed as the flood of the century in the region, as at least 165 people have been confirmed dead.

The property damages have not been fully assessed because the water has not yet receded in many areas. By some accounts, a staggering 200 litres per square meter came down during the storms.

This development has prompted numerous emotional responses from the public, as well as a moderate political call for the more rapid adoption of climate change policy, as in Germany, Chancellor Merkel promised greater climate protection efforts.

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