The organization in regensburg announced that this was the second highest number of donations after the tsunami catastrophe in 2004. The task now is to distribute the money quickly and fairly, said dirk biereige of the workers’ samaritan association, which is a partner in the alliance. The guidelines are clear: "first the insurance pays, then the state, and only then come the donations."
In cooperation with the municipal donation commissions, the money is to be distributed in the coming weeks to those affected, primarily in bavaria, saxony, saxony-anhalt, lower saxony and schleswig-holstein. "We know that the flood victims are eagerly awaiting the donations. But the whole thing has to be handled properly so that no one gets rich," stressed martin steinkirchen of the johanniter unfall hilfe, another partner of aktion deutschland hilft.
The flood disaster had caused in bavaria, saxony and saxony-anhalt damage in the amount of several billion euros. The federal government and the states had agreed to compensate 80 percent of the damage if insurance did not pay out. For the missing 20 percent the donations are intended.
The action alliance, to which 22 renowned aid organizations belong, had initially concentrated on emergency aid in the flooded areas. In exceptional cases, money was also advanced for renovations so that tree removals that could not be postponed could begin. "In these cases, we have concluded contracts with the sponsors so that we can get the money back when the state funds have flowed," emphasized alexandra bengler of the malteser hilbert service.
Many of those affected are still traumatized today. In a district in the bavarian town of deggendorf, where an oleaginous water mixture stood three meters high for days, an advisory mobile is still in operation, he said. Weeks after the disaster, only 30 percent of those affected had applied for flood aid there. "They were overwhelmed with the situation and just had their minds elsewhere," bengler said. Sales of tranquilizers in local pharmacies had skyrocketed. In the meantime, however, 60 percent of the flood victims in deggendorf have applied for financial aid.