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Givealittle page set up by rugby stars like SBW for families affected by Samoa measles epidemic reaches $58,000

Former All Black Sonny Bill Williams has teamed up with old teammates to raise funds for families impacted by the measles outbreak in Samoa, with the crowdfunding page raising over $50,000 in its first day.

Sonny Bill Williams. Source: Photosport

Williams took to social media to promote the "Alofa mo Samoa" Givealittle page to assist families who have suffered losses in the epidemic.

"Our hearts are heavy and hurting at this time for our people in Samoa," the page says.

"We have decided to start a page where those like hearted brothers and sisters can join us in bringing the power of our collective love and alofa to those families most impacted.

"Please join us in donating money that will go straight to the immediate families who have suffered loss of a loved one as a result of this terrible measles outbeak."

To get the ball rolling, Williams was joined by former All Blacks teammates Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Jerome Kaino and Ardie Savea along with close friend and former Wallaby Quade Cooper in a donation of $30,000.

Sir Michael Jones also contributed to the figure and will play a bigger role when donating ends.

"Our promise and pledge is that every cent of every dollar gifted (excl. the Givealittle service fee) will be given directly to each of these families who have lost a loved one, as we know, tragically some have lost 2 or 3 members of the same immediate family," tha page said.

"Sir Michael will coordinate and oversee the safe and secure delivery of each "gift of love" to the respective families with the help of a credible and trustworthy team, assisted by highly regarded Samoa based medical personnel, and we are hoping by the holiday period these families will have received their fair allocated share of the total funds we collect as a result of all our combined love and support."

Read more:
In second day of Samoa’s measles lockdown, 1 NEWS visits village stricken by deadly virus
Another baby dies as Samoa measles death toll climbs to 63
Samoa Sevens team don black arm bands, hold minute's silence in honour of measles victims

Since posting about the page, a further $28,300 has been donated [at the time of writing] from over 300 donors.

The latest number for the death toll from the outbreak sits at 63, with the majority being children aged four or under.