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Responsible Giving to Aid the Haitian Relief Efforts

Here at Harvest, we’ve been shocked by the news of the devastation in Haiti due to an earthquake just a few short days ago.  We’ve all seen the images and stories of the disaster, and all of us wanted to reach out and help in some way.  We were overwhelmed by the options available of where to donate, and so we thought we’d share how we went about our donations.

Donating Wisely

There are a variety of resources which can help one learn more about the charties you might want to donate to.  These services include: Charity Navigator, Give Well, and even this recent Hacker News thread.  If you have the time, these are all great resources and discussions to get familiar with and read through.

A few members of our team were quite interested to discover Dan Pallotta’s book, Uncharitable, which discusses the nebulous and murky financial world charities must navigate, and questions the fundamentals of how we evaluate charities.

Where We Donated

We would never tell you where to donate your money, but we thought it might be helpful for you to hear about where members of the Harvest team have personally donated money to.

  • Haitian-American musician Wyclef Jean’s foundation, Yele Haiti, has been providing humanitarian aid and assistance to Haiti since 2005.  One can easily donate $5 to the Yele Haiti Earthquake Fund by simply texting “Yele” to 501501 (charged to your phone bill), or visit Yele.org for more options.
  • Doctors Without Borders – More than 2,000 patients have been treated so far at Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) locations in Port-au-Prince, and teams are now focusing their attention on expanding surgical capacity, as needs are huge.
  • Partners in Health – PIH spends the vast majority of its revenue on programs, has 4 stars on Charity Navigator
  • Direct Relief International: 100% of the donation goes to Haiti response programs — no administrative work or fundraising is charged against your gift.  They will also be giving photo/video/text updates from the field so you can see just how your money is being used as well as keep up with their work in the days, weeks, and months to come.
  • charity:water and Partners in Health have teamed up, and are flying supplies out of NYC to Haiti on Tuesday. They’re asking for walk-in donations of bottled water, sterile gauze, blankets, etc. The office is at 200 Varick Street, Suite 201.

Thanks for listening.

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This was posted in Behind-the-Scenes.