The torrential rain caused by BERTHA has cancelled most outdoor attractions today, and probably saved you a few quid in the process.
 
As you will be aware there is a massive need for urgent humanitarian relief on several fronts. The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) appeal for Gaza has reached a total of more than £4.5m in less than 24 hours, with money continuing to pour in from the UK public.
 
The PBROTRIB is suggesting that as you look out at the torrential rain pounding your window,  whip out your smart phone and simply donate £5 to the DEC appeal by texting the word SUPPORT to 70000.  (TEXT seven then four zeros)
 
The generosity of the British public will allow the DEC’s member agencies to continue to accelerate the huge humanitarian relief effort in Gaza. 
 
Despite the renewed fighting, aid agencies and their partners are out on the ground helping some of the hundreds of thousands of desperate people in need of clean water, food, shelter, medical treatment and psychological support. 
 
The initial surge in funding comes after the DEC launched its Gaza Crisis Appeal on Friday evening across all major UK broadcasters. The appeal has been boosted by substantial support from the Department for International Development, which matched the first £2m donated by the public pound-for-pound. 
 
DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed said:
 
“The fact that the Gaza Crisis Appeal has reached more than £4.5m in under 24 hours from launch is a testament to the amazing generosity of the British public. We have also benefited from the kind support of DFID, which matched the first £2m donated by the public.
 
The funds are desperately needed, with on-going fighting in Gaza creating an unbearable situation for families and children. Hundreds of thousands of people have been forced to leave their homes, the healthcare system is on the verge of collapse and many people have little or no clean water.
 
Despite the end of the ceasefire, aid is getting through and many of our member agencies are still working on the ground. But with the scale of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, they urgently need more money to scale up their life-saving work.”
 
To make a donation to the DEC Gaza Crisis Appeal visit http://www.dec.org.uk, call the 24 hour hotline on 0370 60 60 900, donate over the counter at any high street bank or post office, or send a cheque. You can also donate £5 by texting the word SUPPORT to 70000. 
 
What your money will buy:
 
£25 can buy 150 bandages
£50 can feed five families for a day
£100 can provide an emergency shelter kit and blankets for one family
 
 
Aid delivered so far includes:
 
Oxfam is delivering safe water to up to 175,000 people per day.
 
CAFOD partners are reaching 99,000 people with water, sanitation and hygiene kits.
 
Christian Aid partners are reaching 20,000 people with clean water and have provided 2,400 people with food and hygiene kits.
 
Islamic Relief is helping over 125,000 people by providing water and sanitation, food and child welfare.
 
World Vision is helping over 10,000 people with medical supplies, food kits and psychosocial support for children.
 
British Red Cross partners are supporting emergency medical services and have already reached 3,900 injured people.
 
Plan UK is providing child protection and psychosocial support to 4,844 children who have fled their homes.
 
Care International have provided emergency healthcare to 3,000 people in Gaza.
 
Age International is providing home care to 1,400 households. 
 
Save the Children are delivering 4,000 litres of safe water per day as well as providing  baby and food kits and psychological care to children.
 
The DEC appeal has been supported by all major UK broadcasters.  The BBC has made and broadcast television and radio appeals, and promoted the appeal heavily online.  ITN has produced an appeal for commercial television carried by ITV, Channel 4, Sky and Channel Five.  RadioCentre has produced appeals for commercial radio stations.
 
Stay up to date with developments in Gaza, the emergency response and the fundraising efforts with the DEC on Twitter or Facebook.