Radio station to donate $500k to nurse's family

Radio station to donate $500k to nurse's family

Radio station to donate $500k to nurse's family

Updated 12 December 2012, 6:46 AEST

The radio station at the centre of the royal prank call that tragically backfired has announced it will resume advertising from Thursday. But all advertising profits from 2Day FM for the rest of the year will benefit the family of London nurse Jacintha Saldanha, who took her own life after answering the hoax. Southern Cross Austereo, which owns the Sydney station, has pledged to provide a minimum of $500,000 to the grieving family.

The radio station at the centre of the royal prank call that tragically backfired will resume advertising from Thursday.

But all advertising profits from 2Day FM for the rest of the year will benefit the family of London nurse Jacintha Saldanha, who took her own life after answering the hoax call.

Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), which owns the Sydney station, has pledged to provide a minimum of $500,000.

The company says the money will go to an appropriate memorial fund that will directly benefit Ms Saldanha's family.

If advertising dollars amount to less than that, the company will contribute the rest.

SCA chief executive Rhys Holleran says the company sends its condolences to Ms Saldanha's family.

"We hope that by contributing to a memorial fund, we can help to provide the Saldanha family with the support they need at this very difficult time," he said in a statement.

King Edward VII hospital chairman Lord Glenarthur says the hospital would welcome such a donation to its fund set up to benefit the nurse's husband and children.

The Australian Stock Exchange has been notified of 2Day FM's announcement.

2Day FM suspended advertising on Saturday in the wake of Ms Saldanha's death, which followed the prank call made by presenters Mel Greig and Michael Christian.

It was seen a bold tactic to retain advertisers who would have been pressured to publically withdraw support from the station.

Coles and Telstra were both quick to pull their advertising, while the suspension is estimated to have cost the station around $150,000 a day.

Meanwhile on Tuesday, members of Ms Saldanha's family made an emotional visit to the nurse's quarters where the 46-year-old died.

Her husband and two children spent 30 minutes in the room where she apparently took her own life.

Some of her former patients also paid their respects.

The DJs involved in the prank remain off the air, and 2Day FM earlier cancelled its Christmas party in the wake of the events.

A spokeswoman for the station says the decision was made out of respect for Ms Saldanha's family and that now is not the time for celebrations.

She says all costs set aside for the event will be donated to Beyond Blue and Lifeline.

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