The Help Gaza Telethon, a 33-hour 30-minute fund raising drive organized by Maldivian media organizations to raise money for the Muslims in Gaza, has amassed MVR 13 million by noon Saturday.
The drive kicked off at 2:30 p.m. on Friday afternoon with MVR 6 million previously collected through the Gaza Fund Maldives effort, conducted by the religiously conservative Adhaalath Party, launched on 17 July.
Organizers of the Help Gaza Telethon have announced that people who wish to donate to the cause can make contributions to the numerous fund boxes placed across the country. People can also donate cash, bank cheques and make payments through bank cards to Bank of Maldives (BML) and Maldives Islamic Bank (MIB) desks at Television Maldives (TVM) station in Male’.
The fund raising effort has gained tremendous momentum since it started Friday afternoon. The fishermen of Shaviyani Funadhoo conducted a fishing competition on Friday, and has made plans to donate one-day’s earnings to the fund. A number of other activities, including ‘Bashi’ and futsal competitions, are scheduled to raise funds in Funadhoo today.
A fishing vessel from Haa Alif Uligamu has also decided to donate one-day's earnings from their catch to the fund. The vessel today aims to hunt Marlin fish, which they plan to sell for a price of MVR 800 per fish in Uligamu.
Speaker of the Parliament Abdulla Maseeh, referring to the donation drive, has said that the “Maldivian flag of humanity is flying high in the international community”, and that the donations collected through the drive is clear proof of Maldivian generosity. Former president Maumoon Abdul Gayoom has also made a personal donation of an undisclosed amount in the name of his wife, former first lady Nasreena Ibrahim, to the Help Gaza fund.
A large number of young children, with small money boxes in their hands, were seen standing in queue near the fund boxes placed inside TVM compound on Friday. A jumble sale ongoing in Imaduddinn School is also attracting an assortment of goods ranging from special cakes with icing to furniture, both used and brand new.
A number of political parties, public and private companies, government offices and organizations have endorsed the fund raising effort. Some organizations and institutions have also urged each individual employee to donate one-day's sum of the salary.
The Help Gaza Telethon is scheduled to run from 2:30 p.m. on Friday until 12:00 a.m. on Sunday, and will carry the hashtag #HelpGazaMv.