Thursday, January 14, 2010

Haitian earthquake relief

Looking to donate money to Haitian earthquake relief? There are lots of potential places to send your money. How do you know who does the most good?

It helps if you're familiar with the organization to which you're donating. I mean, truly familiar, not just familiar with their solicitation materials: you've been active with them, you're familiar with their financial reports, you've volunteered or worked for them, you have friends who are active with them. You feel confident that you know what they do with your money.

A number of people have told me they find Charity Navigator helpful. Click here for Charity Navigator's list of and assessment of groups responding to the crisis in Haiti. Charity Navigator adds:

Please also remember to follow our Tips for Giving in Times of Crisis and our guide for Protecting Yourself From Online Scams to help ensure that your gift gets to those who need it the most.

Religious groups do not always appear in Charity Navigator's lists, since their financial filing requirements are different than 501 (c) 3 s.

Click here for Charity Watch's list of and assessment of groups responding to the crisis in Haiti.

I am deliberately not including a list of charities here -- even though I easily could, based on the criteria I've outlined above, and even though I have strong opinions about several different relief organizations from my experience in humanitarian work. While I've been part of some good conversations on Facebook about different charities -- and thank you if you've been part of those -- I am pretty tired of the way this disaster has so quickly turned into fans of different charities plugging for those specific ones. I think it's actually quite important to think for yourself about this, and make up your own mind.

So here are some tools.

And if you comment, please don't plug a specific organization, okay? Thanks.


Anonymous said...

Hello, I found your site when I was doing a search for 'Quaker work in Haiti.' Thank you, for your wise words and research into the devastating earth event that is ripe for opportunists to take advantage of. I think I was lead here to feel 'less alone' in the world on a cold dark Alaska night. After musing over some of your writing, I realized that I have needed an affirmation of the Quaker process and the energy that comes from discussions from the head and the heart. I am an agnostic Quaker at present and have not found a community in my small town, although there is a Meeting, I do not feel comfortable attending (long story I'm sure you would understand) I have also felt like a second class citizen, not like your struggles with the outdated idea of marriage only being accessible to opposite sex couples, but because I got married and 'accidentally' had twins in a town with no daycare. So you have been treated more like a 'third-class' citizen at best. I get to claim second-class by being condemned to poverty after being forbidden to work (common for twin moms)while pregnant and being barred from working after giving birth because of where I live and being married to a man too scared to move to allow a more egalitarian relationship, and allow me access to work. This has all taxed my strength (I'm 42 yrs.old)and spiritually beyond belief. Of course, divorce is an option legally but I am holding my husband 'in the light' and financially it's almost impossible. So, I have been a life-long Quaker, a positive-anarchist(I want the establishment to fall but no one to get hurt!) since adolescence and now since the birth of twin daughters 4 years ago, a hard-core feminist, now I see some reading about Paganism in my future. Thank you, again for sharing your world-view and all of the hard work that you do so that my daughters may have more choices than we have had. When life gets really hard I look to Alice Paul for my inspiration historically, but it's living, thinking, loving, learning women like you that are continuing the process now that deserve so much credit. I look forward to more of your writing and learning from the lively discourse you inspire, Sincerely, your new Friend from the North, B.

staśa said...

I received the following comment via email, and am posting it as requested anonymously.