More than $100 million has been donated to the New Zealand Red Cross to support those suffering from the earthquakes which have devastated Christchurch.
Of the money raised, more than $49 million has been distributed and Red Cross will today offer further grants to people in need.
The grants, launched after the February 22 quake killed 181 people and caused widespread property damage, have come from more than $69 million donated by the public to the organisation's 2011 earthquake appeal.
Red Cross organisations overseas have raised another $14 million, while $22 million was donated by New Zealanders after the quake in September 2010 - a total of $105 million.
Most of the money paid out - $44.2 million - has gone to affected people in the form of emergency hardship grants, while $10,000 bereavement grants have been provided to 178 families of those killed.
Brian Kennedy, who lost his wife Faye in Christchurch's CTV building in the February 22 earthquake, said the payout had made life a little easier.
"It's not going to bring [my wife] back," Mr Kennedy said.
"But it was exceptionally helpful at a stressful time. I don't like the word pressure, but I must admit it did appear from time to time. And that [grant] did allay any bits of pieces that perhaps I should have been attending to, but I really couldn't have cared about at that stage.
"Really what Red Cross is known for has come to the fore. You don't expect Red Cross to be assisting in New Zealand, but you don't expect disasters like this either."
The New Zealand Red Cross will today announce two new grants - a $500 grant for people left without flushing toilets for at least 90 days, and a $250 grant for caregivers whose children have been forced to move to new homes and schools.
All interest earned on money not yet paid out from the pool of donations is being reinvested into the appeal, and will go to those affected by the quakes. Additional money donated to the New Zealand Red Cross by overseas corporate partners and other Red Cross national societies brings its pool of money to about $80 million - with this additional money to be used to directly fund quake recovery efforts.
Red Cross chief executive John Ware said he was humbled by the generous donations of people here and abroad.
On top of the $105 million fundraising effort, Herald publisher APN's NZ chief executive Martin Simons handed over two cheques to Mr Ware for nearly $250,000.
Sales from the commemorative magazine 12.51 and APN regional magazines raised $178,000, while an online auction of 20 Sean Chen paintings on sella.co.nz raised $68,000. APN also donated $100,000 after the September 4 quake.
Red Cross grants paid out as of August 4 include:
* $1.78m in bereavement grants to families of earthquake victims (some applications are still being processed).
* $2,717,250 to caregivers of 5581 children affected by the closure of a school or early childhood facility, with the aim of keeping parents and children connected.
* $54,250 to caregivers of 223 children in recognition of school relocations.
* By August 29, more than $1.5m will have been paid in heating subsidies to the most vulnerable.
RED CROSS RESPONSE
* 14 emergency teams of 289 volunteers worked more than 6800 hours.
* 20 rescue team members worked 700 hours after the quakes.
* 6 welfare centres manned by Red Cross teams supporting over 3000 evacuees with welfare, psychosocial support, first aid and registration.
* 275,150+ litres of water distributed.