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Old 09-27-2004, 07:49 PM   #1
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Authorized Florida Hurricane Relief

About this Fund
Following the devastation caused by Hurricane Charley on August 13, and the projected damage of Hurricane Frances over the Labor Day weekend, thousands of Floridians are in need.

Governor Jeb Bush has established the Florida Hurricane Relief Fund to assist communities in rebuilding. This fund will be used for needs unmet by other disaster relief organizations also working to help rebuild lives and communities. Communities will decide how their allocations from this fund should be spent, and the most heavily impacted communities will receive the greatest percentage of these funds. (For more information on allocation, go the the Allocation Procedures for Distribution button from the home page of this website.) Please give. Your donation is tax deductible.
To donate via the Internet, click here. For questions about this fund, or to donate by phone, call


To volunteer your time, or make in-kind donations, call 1-800-FL-HELP-1, or click here for information from Volunteer Florida.

10 Questions about the Florida Hurricane Relief Fund

1. Why has the Florida Hurricane Relief Fund been set up when there are other nonprofit agencies assisting in the relief efforts?
Thousands of Floridians were impacted by Hurricanes Charley, Frances and Ivan. Federal, state and local assistance cannot cover all the resources needed to rebuild. Governor Jeb Bush established this Fund to help cover needs that cannot be met by other organizations. 2. Who will provide the leadership in this effort?
Heading the Fund’s voluntary steering committee is former U.S. Senator Connie Mack. Serving as vice-chairs are Joe Lacher, President of Florida-BellSouth Telecommunications, and Clarence Otis, CEO-designee of Darden Restaurants. Tallahassee-based attorney Steve Uhlfelder has been appointed by Gov. Bush as the voluntary CEO of this committee. Susan Story, President and CEO of Gulf Power, and Tony Carvajal, President of Carvajal Consulting and Management. Governor Bush has designated nonprofit Volunteer Florida Foundation to manage the Fund. VFF’s Chairman, Barney Bishop of The Windsor Group, and VFF President Liza McFadden, are overseeing administration.

3. How much money do you hope to raise?
We have not established a monetary goal. However, with more than 170,000 registrations for assistance from FEMA following Hurricane Charley alone, the need is great.

4. How can an organization or individual apply for assistance from this fund?
Through county committees. The Florida Hurricane Relief Fund is requesting affected counties eligible for funding form a committee THAT MUST INCLUDE relief organizations, including Red Cross and Salvation Army, working in that county. Each committee will determine where federal, state and local funds can’t cover restoration, and make decisions about where the Fund should be used. Additionally, allocations for this fund will be weighted according to FEMA data on destruction and need - the counties hardest hit will receive the larger percentage of the Fund.

For counties affected by Hurricane Charley, it has been determined that the allocation focus will be on the 10 counties that sustained the most damage, as determined by FEMA. Those are: Highlands, Hardee, DeSoto, Seminole, Volusia, Polk, Osceola, Lee, Orange and Charlotte. Distribution procedures can be viewed at The first distributions to these counties are scheduled for the week of September 20.

Determinations are under way for counties impacted by Hurricanes Frances and Ivan.

5. Do you have to be a US citizen to benefit from the fund?
No. Each county will decide where Fund assistance is most needed, and that can include help for those who are not citizens.

6. How much of the money donated goes into the field?
The only funds taken from donations will be for staff costs directly targeted to the fund, including accounting, bookkeeping, reporting and clerical work, not to exceed 3%. No committee member will be paid – all are serving on a voluntary basis.

7. How can donors be sure the money really goes where it is needed?
Through constant oversight and reports to the public. An official report on donations accepted and funds distributed will be issued in six months, and every six months thereafter until this fund is no longer needed.

8. Where is the money coming from?
Donations and pledges are coming from across the globe, including Belgium, Canada and Singapore. So far, individuals in 34 states across America have pledged. Corporations also are answering the call. The Fund has received donations ranging from $9 from an anonymous donor to $50,000 from an individual. Corporate pledges are ranging from thousands of dollars up to $1 million.

9. How can I give, and is my donation tax-deductible?
All donations are tax-deductible. You can donate by visiting, or by calling 1-800-FL-HELP-1.

Each donor to this fund will receive an acknowledgement. State registration number is CH8536.

10. Would it be better to donate to Florida Hurricane Relief Fund rather than another relief organization?
Donors should follow their hearts and give to the organizations of their choice. Every donation makes a tremendous difference. Many donors are giving to several organizations to assist in immediate and longer-term needs. The important message: Give. Together we can rise and rebuild.

"The Cleveland Indians are going to change their name. They don't want to be known as a team that perpetuates racial stereotypes. From now on they're just going to be called the Indians." - Native Comedian Vaughn Eaglebear, Colville/Lakota
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