Sunday 18 February 2018

Huge plunge in Madeleine fund as donors dry up

Sam Marsden in London

Kate and Gerry McCann's fund to help find their missing daughter Madeleine dwindled to £125,000 last year, official accounts show.

The amount the couple raised for Madeleine's Fund dropped from £233,099 (€282,281) in 2009-10 to £177,534 (€214,992) in 2010-11.

At the end of March last year the balance stood at £125,175 (€151,582), down from £470,034 (€569,196) a year earlier, according to newly published accounts filed with Companies House.

The McCanns, from Rothley, Leicestershire, had feared that the dwindling fund would leave them unable to continue paying private detectives to search for Madeleine. To avoid this, Mrs McCann published a book about their daughter's disappearance in May last year, with all proceeds from sales and a newspaper serialisation deal going to support the search.

The fund's directors wrote in a preface to the 2010-11 accounts: "Over the past financial year, as with the previous one, the costs of the search continued to be higher than the fund's annual income. Income, particularly donations, has been lower than in previous years, as might be expected.

"Without a significant financial boost, the fund would be empty by the end of spring 2011."

Madeleine's Fund was launched a fortnight after the little girl vanished from her family's holiday apartment in Praia da Luz, southern Portugal, on May 3, 2007.

Donations flooded in from supporters around the world who wanted to do something to help her parents, and the income for 2007-08 totalled £1,846,178 (€2,235,673)

Last year the fund paid for private investigators, a telephone information hotline, an ongoing awareness campaign and three fundraisers.

Irish Independent

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