Pike River Coal mine started a trust fund for the men's families yesterday with a $500,000 pledge.

Major shareholder New Zealand Oil and Gas matched the amount and other companies that work with Pike River also pledged their support.

The Pike River Miners' Relief Fund, managed by four trustees, would be used to pay for support and other services, Pike River chairman John Dow said.

Donations can be made to the fund by direct credit to 06-0501-0121759-02 or by post to Pike Miners' Relief Fund, PO Box 2793, Wellington.

The Grey District Council has also established a Pike River Relief Fund Trust.

Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn said the fund would give income support to families of the lost miners and aid the efforts of many of the agencies involved in responding to the crisis, including Red Cross and Victims Support.

Council finance manager Ian Young today said it had already raised $1.35 million, including $100,000 in text donations.

Donations are being taken at any Westpac branch and can also be sent to the Grey District Council, PO Box 382, Greymouth 7840.

Online donations should be sent to the Westpac account set up for the fund - A/C number: 03 0846 0167234 00 and automatic $3 donations to the fund can be made by texting 306.

The Engineering, Printing & Manufacturing Union (EPMU) has set up the EPMU Pike River Miners Family Support Trust.

Half the funds will be donated to the Grey District Council's fund and half will go to a dedicated fund for the education of the killed miner's families.

Donations can be made at Kiwibank branches, online to a/c 38-9011-0165987-00 or sent care of the EPMU to PO Box 14-277, Kilbirnie, Wellington 6241.

The ANZ bank and The National Bank have set up their own relief funds, with ANZ donating $100,000. Both banks are taking donations at any of their branches.

BNZ has also opened an appeal account for the families and community of the lost miners.

It has given the first $100,000 to the "Pike River Mine BNZ Appeal" and is welcoming more donations to 02 0844 0074501-00.

All proceeds from the appeal will be directed to the Pike River Miners Relief Fund Trust.

The ASB bank said it would be making a substantial donation to the account it set up, 12-3205-0146728-00.

Variety - The Children's Charity is also rally resources through Variety International and the Variety Medical Missions in New Zealand, and encouraging people to make donations, with all funds raised to go to miners' families to help their children.

Donations can be made at www.variety.org.nz.

The Hurunui District Council has collection points at council offices and libraries for donations and messages of support for the miners families.

The Parents Centres New Zealand also started an account fund to receive donations for a trust fund to support the families of miners who were soon to be fathers or had small children.

Donations can be made to ASB account 12 3142 0161284 01.

Givealittle.co.nz has set up a donation appeal for the trust.

The Salvation Army has established a drop-in centre to give support and assistance.

Captain Charles Prattley said it welcomed donations of non-perishable foods.

Many extended family members of the 29 miners had travelled to stay in the town and supplies were getting low, he said.

Packages can be mailed to 34 Karoro Pl, Greymouth or couriered to the Cnr Murray and Tainui St, Greymouth.

Skylight, a not-for-profit trust, has launched an internet page to provide support for people affected by the disaster. The page can be found at the website www.skylight.org.nz.