Sending Help and Hope to the Philippines After Typhoon Haiyan
Many are looking for ways to send help in the wake of the devastation wrought by Typhoon Haiyan
My family is one of the lucky ones. I didn’t get a chance to speak to my mom until Saturday morning, a day after the storm hit, and my first question was about our family who still reside in her tiny hometown. She hails from Bantig San Rafael, near Maasin City in Southern Leyte, which was right in the path of the powerful typhoon. Just over a decade ago, we built a modest hollow block (aka cinder block) house for my grandfather (lolo) and aunt (tita). Now my mom’s only remaining sibling-her baby brother-and his family reside in the home and we are thankful to say that they are safe and, miraculously, the home is still standing. My mom said they (all of our cousins, etc.) ran to our house and others ran to the school for shelter. But there are many-too many-who are not so fortunate. Thousands are dead, and so many more are displaced-without food, water, or shelter. They must now pick up, find out about remaining relatives who either survived or perished in the storm, and begin the arduous task of rebuilding their communities, their homes, their lives.
I was approached by someone very close to me inquiring about which organizations to donate to, to help those in need in the Philippines. Great question! So I went to the site of the Asian Journal, a wonderful local Filipino community newspaper, to see if they had a list of suggested organizations to donate to. They have a list of about 24 organizations from which to choose. I am aware though, that often there are questions and concerns, when making a donation, of whether any or all of the money donated will actually go to the selected cause. This is where the website Charity Navigator comes in handy. This site allows you to enter the name of a charitable organization that you’re interested in and find out how effective the charity is (i.e. do most of the dollars raised go towards actual program costs or administrative costs as this is a big sticking point for many people in choosing to give to a charity). I cross-checked between Charity Navigator’s post about Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts (they had 22 organizations listed) and Asian Journal’s list and saw these four, that were on both lists, that you may be interested in:
1) ShelterBox USA – Provides shelter kits and other necessary items to those in need.
2) Doctors Without Borders – This great organization is sending medical personnel over to the areas affected by Typhoon Haiyan.
3) World Vision – Provides a range of necessities to children and families affected by the typhoon.
4) Catholic Relief Services – This organization will be providing shelter and living essentials to typhoon victims.
This is just a short list of organizations that I cross-checked. I would urge our readers, if you wish to help out and donate, first, THANK YOU! Second, check out both lists, do your research (there are so many organizations to choose from!), and keep an eye out in the local and national media because, as I understand, there are fundraising events in the works. Also, Cox Communications is generously offering the Filipino Channel (Cox channel 270) for free, for a limited time to digital cable subscribers (must have a digital cable box), to provide continuous coverage of Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts.