The riots that rocked London for the past week have cost five people their lives, burned many buildings and destroyed small businesses. Damages caused by the destruction and looting may cost taxpayers $162 million. Sccording to Scotland Yard, 1,051 people have been arrested in connection with the riots, with almost 600 charged.
As people started the long road of repairing the city, some were faced with the daunting reality that they might not be able to afford to save their own businesses. Social campaigns have sprung up to help those at a loss.
Aaron Biber, 89, did not have the funds to fix his damaged Tottenham salon, which he has owned for 41 years. When three interns at a London ad firm heard his story, they set up the site “Keep Aaron Cutting” to raise funds for the barber. So far, more than $45,500 has been pledged. Any leftover funds will go toward rebuilding the community, according to the site.
A similar campaign to help Hackney shopkeeper Siva Kandiah rebuild his convenience store was started by two former London residents who now live in New York. About $15,800 have been raised so far.
“Save Siva’s Shop” was inspired by “Something nice for Ashraf,” a fund set up for Ashraf Haziq. Haziq, a Malaysian student, who was caught on camera during the riots. In the video, which went viral on YouTube, someone steals out of Haziq’s bag as he stands bleeding in the street. The site raised more than $35,000 for his medical bills.