Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Don't Just Stand There, Do Something

The developing earthquake/tsunami situation in Asia and West Africa upset me so thoroughly I turned off the news. One of my relatives reminded me that we don't have the luxury of ignoring these events. So, in full humility, I offer this list of relief agencies.

Center for International Disaster Information

Common sense and experience.

American Council on Voluntary International Action

Let them advise you on what you personally have to offer victims everywhere.

Includes a maps section that turns news reports into shocking recognitions

This is a UN branch. Perhaps you harbor ill feelings from that they-were-right-our-administration-was-wrong practical-joke-thing; now would be a good time to get over that. The UN is the agency you want in motion and on the job. Help the UN do what it does best.

As of half an hour ago, I couldn't get into the Red Cross/Red Crescent site. Hopefully, it was flooded with donors. I don't want to insult anyone's intelligence but I will say the Red Crescent is the branch of this agency that'd be most active in Asia and East Africa.

Mercy Corps is also awfully good.

The common theme in the requests for aid is money because shipping *stuff* that isn't necessarily the right stuff is expensive. The web sites will detail which agencies assume what responsibilities in natural disaster, and how the money's spent.

Go forth, and mitigate suffering.


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