Foundation gives out $5.5 million from donations to Joplin

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JOPLIN, Mo. — A foundation has distributed more than $5.5 million in donations that poured into Joplin after a May 2011 tornado.

The Joplin Tornado Fund administered by the Community Foundation of Southwest Missouri received just over $6 million in donations from sources as diverse as children’s lemonade stands to $500,000 from celebrities Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.

Stephanie Howard, president of the foundation board, says about 54 percent of the funds went to organizations that rebuilt or repaired the homes of owners who didn’t have insurance or enough insurance, or to federal allocations to re-establish a house or repair all the damage.

The Joplin Globe report groups that helped with mental health and counseling, and those that cared for children while parents dealt with the tornado’s aftermath, also received foundation grants.