WAUKESHA, Wis. — The United for Waukesha Community Fund announced Monday they have raised more than $6.2 million for the victims of the Waukesha Christmas Parade attack in which six people were killed and dozens were injured last year.
Now, nearly four months after the tragedy funds will be distributed to the families impacted. Waukesha County Community Foundation President Melissa Baxter said the goal is to get funds out be the end of March.
"It's been really amazing and affirming about who we are and how much we want. When we hear someone is in pain, we want to make a difference," Baxter said about the support for the Waukesha community.
Donations came into the fund from all 50 states and 18 different countries around the world.
"I think there's a lot of talk about what divides us, but really at the end of the day, they want their neighbors to be okay and it's just been an inspiration really," Baxter said.
The foundation is distributing funds based on four different groups:
- The families of the six people who lost their lives will receive a total of $200,000 each.
- The 29 claimants who were hospitalized will receive a total of $2,510,000, with individual disbursements depending on the length of hospital stay.
- The 37 claimants who were injured and treated as outpatients will receive a total of $408,000 with individual disbursements depending on short- or long-term recovery.
- The 495 claimants who were physically present at the parade will receive a total of $1,712,597 with individual disbursements depending on claimants’ status as a parade participant, spectator, or first responder.
"Our team has actually read all 560-plus claims that came in, and so although we weren't there, we can share that the trauma people experienced is immense," Baxter shared.
Additionally three non-profits will receive at total of $59,400. Those are Wisconsin Hero Outdoors, which will provide programming to first responders involved at the parade, and family services, which is providing mental health resources, and also Catholic Memorial High School, which is providing additional services for its community members impacted by the parade.
Five percent of the fund is also being set aside for any future costs that come up for victims. Baxter said several victims have already had to go back to the hospital or have had complications.
The deadline to apply for funds was Feb. 28. Initial disbursements started in December and will continue via check on a rolling basis. The fundraiser will accept donations through Dec. 31, 2022, organizers said. By January of 2023, the foundation will distribute any remaining funds to victims and their families.