The brother of the British teenagers killed in the Sri Lanka terror bombings is aiming to raise £500,000 to help victims’ families.
David Linsey, 21, lost his sister Amelie, 15, and brother Daniel, 19, when one of the seven suicide bombers struck the Shangri-La hotel in Colombo on Easter Sunday.
More than 300 people were killed in the attacks, including eight British nationals, which targeted churches and hotels across the country.
The 21-year-old Oxford graduate has already raised £78,000 on the crowdfunding platform JustGiving towards helping the victims. He plans to keep going until he hits the half a million mark.
“We’re setting up a foundation in my brother and sister’s memory. It’s something we need to do as a family to have a semblance of balance, so that something good can come from something so terrible,” Mr Linsey said.
“We don’t want to be remembered as the family that lost two children, but the family who helped 1,000 children. We want our loss to mean something, and my siblings to be remembered.”
Most of tragedy’s fatalities were Sri Lankans whose families are now struggling to cope.
“Many victims in Sri Lanka lost almost everything: their breadwinner, their parents, their livelihoods. We want to make sure they have a roof over their head, access to healthcare and an education. We’re getting in touch with the victims’ families to make sure they have what is most useful for them,” Mr Linsey explained.
“Donations on the JustGiving page have been pouring in, and we’ve been amazed by how generous people have been. Every penny counts towards making a difference.”
When his father Matthew, 60, was in hospital with his children following the bombings, Mr Linsey was struck by a lack of resources. Doctors simply did not have the means to save every patient, he said.
“He had to yell out for any attention: it was chaos,” he added. “We’ve been in touch with the doctor who tried to save my brother’s life to see what equipment they need.”
On his JustGiving page, Mr Linsey writes: “Had the hospitals been fully equipped many more, if not Amelie and Daniel, could have been saved.
“In a country where over 3000 people die on the roads each year, this equipment will have also uses far beyond responding to terror attacks.
“May those who perished in this attack rest in peace. We aim not to move on, but to continue in their giving and loving ways.”