The Gray Area Foundation announced Wednesday that it will begin distributing $848,344 to those affected by the deadly Ghost Ship warehouse fire back in December.
Gray Area, an San Francisco-based non-profit whose mission "is to apply art and technology to create positive social impact," received the most donations -- more than $890,000 from almost 12,000 online contributors -- following the Dec. 2 fire that killed 36 people.
The announcement came one day after the East Bay Express ran a story about the group's fundraising efforts following the fire, noting that Gray Area had not yet distributed any of the money. Josette Melchor, Gray Area's executive director and founder, said the announcement had already been in the works and was not spurred by the article.
"We've been working day and night on this whole thing and there was a deadline for this print article, so it didn't include our press release," Melchor said.
Through an online submission form, the organization received more than 400 requests for aid. After vetting those applications, Gray Area has so far approved 136 qualified recipients.