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Friday, October 08, 2004

All-Volunteer Group Comes to The Aid of Beslan's Victims

International Foundation for Terror Act Victims is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to helping victims of terror attacks. The name may be a little misleading since so far it appears that the organization has exclusively concerned itself with helping the victims of terrorism in Russia. Unfortunately, there has been no shortage of victims in need of aid in that country in the recent years. And it looks like The Foundation has acquitted itself well as an aid organization.

The Foundation's first project was aiding the victims of Dubrovka theater siege in Moscow in 2002. The Foundation then collected US$33,166 in donations of which US$31,950 was distributed amongst the victims and their families.

The Foundation is currently collecting donations for the aid of the victims of the terror attack against a school in Beslan. In a little more than a month, The Foundation has collected over US$900,000 and distributed over US$40,000 to the final recipients.

While I have not yet been able to obtain an independent review of The Foundation's activities in Beslan, they are coordinating their work with Beslan.ru,- a grass-roots volunteer group in Beslan staffed by people directly affected by this tragedy. And as I have written earlier, people who have my complete confidence have gotten in touch with that group and vouch for it. That gives me some confidence in The Foundation.

The Foundation is a US 501(c)(3) Public Charity and if you live in the US that qualifies you to list your donation as a tax deduction. If you do choose to donate, and you happen to have a PayPal account, a direct transfer would likely be the best way for you to minimize the expenses associated with handling your donation.

I will continue to try and keep you updated on the situation. At this point, The Foundation is the best channel I could find for US donors to help the Beslan victims.

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