Established in 2017, Friends of Notre-Dame de Paris began to support efforts to restore Notre-Dame Cathedral. Pollution, rain and time weakened the cathedral’s basic structure, and an ambitious $135 million campaign was planned to save Notre-Dame de Paris.
On April 15, 2019, the scope of that campaign dramatically changed when a fire broke out under the eaves of the cathedral’s roof.
Fire engulfed the spire and most of the roof. Thankfully, firefighters were able to control the blaze, saving the main structure including the bell towers and rose windows. Nobody was injured, and the Catholic relics housed in the cathedral and priceless works of art were rescued and brought to safety.
Now a huge task lies before us. We must rebuild, restore and protect Notre-Dame Cathedral. We must help open her doors once more to welcome the millions of visitors who come to visit her each year.
Notre-Dame Cathedral is not just a Parisian or a French monument. She belongs to the world, and she needs our help.
After the fire, there was an overwhelming outpouring of support from the international community, including pledges totaling in the hundreds of millions over the duration of the reconstruction. Friends of Notre-Dame de Paris raised $10.6 million in 2019 from more than 10,500 donors in the US and in more than 50 countries outside France.
But there is still much work to be done. The reconstruction timeline and full budget needed will be finalized in 2021. Before the end of the reconstruction, we will also need to create an endowment that will help fund the maintenance of Notre-Dame Cathedral and avoid further decay.
Friends of Notre-Dame de Paris is the registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization leading the international collaboration to support the rebuilding of Notre-Dame Cathedral. Our small staff works with very low organizational overhead and our priority is to fund the rebuilding and the restoration of Notre-Dame Cathedral.
We have strong partnerships with the Archdiocese of Paris and with Fondation Notre-Dame in France, and we work in close cooperation with the Public Agency in charge of the preservation and the restoration of Notre-Dame de Paris, which was created after the fire within the French Ministry of Culture to lead and manage the reconstruction works.
On March 9, the Cultural Center of the Lycée Français de New York canceled an international panel of experts out of an abundance of caution