Donating To The Charleston Victims & Their Church Is Easy — You Can Even Pledge Money From Your Cell Phone

In the wake of the Charleston massacre, mourners have been flooding Emanuel AME Church with flowers, balloons, prayer cards, and messages to the nine victims. But beyond the flowers and the prayers, the historic black church has been overwhelmed by the monetary donations coming in from generous well-wishers across the United States. And according to representatives from the City of Charleston, donations to the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund continue to pour in at an astonishing pace.

As of Tuesday morning, the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund, under the care of the City of Charleston, has received over $377,000 in monetary donations. A separate fund established by the nonprofit The Palmetto Project in the name of Rev. Clementa Pinckney, the Emanuel pastor and state senator who was killed in his own church during last week's shooting massacre, has raised more than $70,000 as of this writing.

According to the city government's website, the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund will provide direct financial support for funeral and burial costs of the nine victims. The city said any remaining funds will be given to the Emanuel church.

Donations can be made by sending a check to the City of Charleston P.O. Box listed on the city government's website, or by texting "prayforcharleston" to (843)-606-5995. A fund website has also been set up for online contributions.

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The Reverend Pinckney Fund will help fund community faith initiatives like the ones the reverend led during his time at Emanuel AME Church, the Palmetto Project states on the fund's page. These initiatives include addressing "social and economic challenges facing youth and marginalized communities in South Carolina."

The Palmetto Project is accepting monetary contributions to the Reverend Pinckney Fund online via PayPal or through snail mail, which may be sent at the address listed on the fund's website. The City of Charleston will not be overseeing this fund; instead, it's being led by a task force consisting of Pinckney's colleagues and fellow community leaders.

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Since the creation of the two Charleston funds, major companies have stepped in and pledged donations to either the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund or the Reverend Pinckney Fund — or both. Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, who flew to Charleston on Friday to meet with local Starbucks workers on the Charleston peninsula, said the coffee retailer will donate $50,000 to each fund.

In an updated statement released Monday, Schultz reiterated Starbucks' support for the Charleston community:

This is a time for our country to grieve and reflect on the recent tragic events in Charleston, SC. The empathy and spirit of forgiveness represented by the families of the victims there is a moving example of our common humanity and speaks to the way we can all heal and move forward together. At Starbucks we believe that as a country we should lean into our diversity and the equality of opportunity it represents. Any policies that enable this new mindset for America will help our country to prosper. And certainly the decision to remove the Confederate Flag from South Carolina’s state grounds will help move us forward in this direction.

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