Kyoto Animation GoFundMe ‘Help KyoAni Heal’ set up after deadly arson attack, surpasses $750k target in just 12 hours

Kyoto Animation studio building set ablaze
Scenes from the Kyoto Animation arson attack: 33 people have been confirmed dead. Pic credit: NHK

A GoFundMe page, titled Help KyoAni Heal, has been set up following news on Thursday morning of the deadly arson attack on Kyoto Animation studio in the Uji suburb of Kyoto Prefecture in Japan.

Officials have confirmed that 33 people died in the attack, and 36 injured have been taken to the hospital. Some of the injured were in critical condition.

According to police, about 70 people were believed to have been inside the building when a 41-year-old man broke in and started the fire by spraying flammable liquid and then igniting it, Monsters and Critics reported.

Police said they have arrested the suspected arsonist, who was taken to hospital after being injured in the incident. Eyewitnesses said the man looked angry and upset before he set the building ablaze early on Thursday morning.

Sentai Filmworks sets up GoFundMe page

Sentai Filmworks, a U.S. licensing company based in Houston, Texas, that focuses on Japanese anime and films, set up a GoFundMe page titled Help KyoAni Heal hours after news of the deadly arson attack broke.

“Sentai Filmworks hopes to help the KyoAni team during this time of need and asks that you join us in this endeavor,” writes John Ledford, President of Sentai Filmworks on the GoFundMe page.

It is clear that our friends at Kyoto Animation (KyoAni) have suffered greatly… we wanted to take action to help however we can. That is the purpose of this Gofundme effort.

Your pledges and the funds we raise are intended to provide the most direct, meaningful assistance possible to the victims of this heartbreaking tragedy. We are coordinating with others in the Japanese anime industry within Japan to ensure that funds collected reach those in need.

The response to the appeal by Sentai Filmworks has been overwhelming. At the time of writing — 12 hours after the page was set up — the Help KyoAni Heal fundraising campaign has surpassed the original target of $750,000, having raised more than $830,000.

The outpouring of sorrow and grief over the tragic incident in which 33 people died has also been overwhelming on social media.

Sentai Filmworks’ best known licensed anime series include titles by Kyoto Animation, such as K-On!! and Clannad.

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