Houston native and tech billionaire Michael Dell committed $36 million to help with the Harvey relief efforts.
His pledge was from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and is the largest individual contribution thus far. It comes following a long list of donations from companies to help the victims of the deadly storm and aid with the recovery.
The billionaire is the CEO and founder of Dell. He and wife Susan also announced on Friday the launch of the Rebuild Texas Fund with the Governor of Texas Greg Abbott.
The two already have donated over $17 million for the launch of the fund. The goal for the Fund is raising $100 million to use for immediate storm relief efforts and for long term recovery as well as rebuilding.
In a prepared statement, the Dells said that the disaster was personal to all with roots in Texas. Both Dell and his wife were born and raised in Texas. The street in which Dell grew up was under water as of Friday.
The Dell foundation will match $1 for every $2 that are donated to its new fund for the first $36 million that is raised. The matching started on Friday and continues through to Monday at midnight.
Corporate heavyweights have contributed more than $113 million to the relief efforts through Friday, according to estimates released by the United States Chamber of Commerce.
Fifty-two companies donated $1 million or more through late Thursday. The figures were growing and pledges were continuing to be received. Walmart pledged $20 million in cash, matching donations and products.
Toyota contributed $3 million to the relief efforts. At the same time, Verizon made a contribution of $10 million.
As the overall scope of the storm’s devastation has become into focus over the past few days, many businesses began making their contributions.
Janet Mountain, the Dell Foundation executive director said the new fund would focus first on the initial efforts but continue through with rebuilding and long term recovery efforts.
The fund is just days old and no grantees have yet to be identified, but Mountain said money raised would help families in four areas: housing and health, childcare and school, transportation and work force, as well as capital to be used for the rebuilding of small businesses.
Mountain, who had family members rescued this week in Houston, said none of the raised money would be used to cover administrative costs.