Canadian efforts to raise money for famine relief in Africa received a huge boost on Wednesday.

A Toronto couple gave $2 million to the Canadian Red Cross Horn of Africa Drought fund, while the Ontario government promised another $1 million for Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in the region.

The private donation was made by Kroum and Eva Pindoff, the founders of Music World. 

"After seeing stark images of this tremendous tragedy and misery, our family has decided to do what we can to alleviate the suffering," said Kroum Pindoff in a news release.

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A wide swathe of east Africa, including Kenya and Ethiopia, has been hit by years of severe drought and the United Nations says two regions of southern Somalia are suffering the worst famine for 20 years. ((Reuters) )

The Pindoffs say they hope their donation will inspire others to give. 

"I only hope that every Canadian will step up to give whatever they can afford to support the starving children and families in the Horn of Africa," said Eva Pindoff.

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty said his province was making a $1 million donation because "to have nothing to eat is a frightening and unimaginable idea for many of us and a sad reality for millions of people in the Horn of Africa."

The federal government has said it will match all individual donations of up to $100,000 made between July 6 and Sept. 16.