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Record €2.4m in l-Istrina funds handed to charities

President George Abela this morning handed cheques to 29 beneficiaries of l-Istrina 2010.

He said that the total amount that was being donated was €2.4 million, the highest amount ever collected.

Just under €1.4 million consisted of cash donations, €250,000 were donations made through SMS and almost €700,000 were donations made by telephone.

Franco Masini, chairman of the board which selected the beneficiaries, said it took time to hand out the donations because the money pledged on telephone had to be collected. He said the board is now in the process of issuing applications from organisations wishing to benefit from this year's l-Istrina, which will be held on Boxing Day at Verdala Castle.

Fabian Mizzi, one of the l-Istrina organisers said the organisers would this year encourage people to call at Verdala. There will be historic re-enactments and, as usual, the even will be televised live, with a varied entertainment programme. People may also make donations over the phone.

Dr Abela said the handing out of the donations was a day of celebration for the fund and the donors.

He said the accounts of l-Istrina would be published shortly.

Today's beneficiaries were St Antide Foundation, Standing Towards Ability not Disability, Ejjew Ghandi, Ghana Mission Foundation, Daughters of the Sacred Heart Vongregation, St Joseph Home, Richmond Foundation, Fondazzjoni Wens, Fondazzjoni Suret il-Bniedem, Dar Pirotta;

Millennium Chapel, Equal Partners Foundation, Dar il-Kaptan, Caritas, SOS Malta, Malta Red Cross Society, Jesuit Refugee Services, the Malta Guide Dogs Foundation, Sisters of Charity, Living Ability not Disability, Angela House;

Dar Sagra Familja, Amputees for Amputees, Grupp Gwarjola, Centu Pastorali Raghaj it-Tajjeb, Dar Osana Pia, Franciscan Sisters of the Heart of Jesus and Victim Support Malta.

Dr Abela this morning also published the annual report of the Malta Community Chest Fund for the year ending March.

During the year the Fund had a surplus of €791,346, a decrease of €88,228 over the previous year. Total contributions tot he fund in 2011 decreased by €32,297 when compared with the previous year.

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