DETROIT (WWJ) – People as far away as the United Kingdom have come forward offering donations to the bankrupt city of Detroit.

Miram Noland, President of the Community Foundation of Southeast Michigan, says last November Judge Gerald Rosen met with a dozen prominent national foundations and laid out the issue:  Detroit needs money to help pay for city worker pensions in order to stave off a sale of works at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

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Nine of those foundations agreed to give a total of $330 million.

That’s impressive, says Noland — but there’s more.

“Individuals started calling the court saying we wanna give,” Noland told WWJ’s Marie Osborne, “and the court couldn’t take the money, so … they turned to us and said, ‘Can you put in put in place a way that individuals can give?'”

Noland said the foundation set up an online donation portal, and donations are pouring in from all over.

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“The fact that individuals are coming forward around the country, I guess it did and it didn’t surprise me,” Noland said. “I can understand individuals in Detroit and Michigan, but it’s interesting that it’s captured the interest of people around the country; and it may be because the question of selling art got such national visibility.”

Noland said many of the donations are small in size, but that doesn’t matter.  It’s a way, she said, that anybody can contribute, and the money will be rolled into the larger pot.

“We’re getting notes saying, you know, we care, we want to do something  — and these contributions are coming from Maine, to Florida, to Oregon, Maryland, Scotland! Don’t ask me how they learned about it,” she said.

Noland says the donations won’t be used unless a mediated settlement for bankruptcy is reached.

To learn more or to make a donation, visit this link.

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