In the wake of "Super Typhoon" Haiyan slamming into the Philippines, many relief organizations across the world are donating their time and resources to help those affected.
TO FIND VICTIMS AND SHELTERS: Google launched a crisis and relief map including evacuation shelters, crisis areas and relief drop zones. Go here for the map. Google also launched a person finder. If you're looking for loved ones in the area that may have been affected or if you have information about someone, go here.
RED CROSS: The Philippine Red Cross is working to provide rescue and relief supports to those affected by Typhoon Haiyan. To donate directly to the typhoon relief efforts, go here and select "Supertyphoon Yolanda (HAIYAN)" from the "campaign" drop-down menu.
The American Red Cross has also deployed two people to assess with efforts in the Philippines. They suggest donating by sending a check to your local Red Cross and writing "Philippines Typhoons and Flood" in the memo line.
CARE is delivering food, water, shelter and other essentials to the survivors of the typhoon. To donate to CARE's efforts, go here or call 1-800-521-2273.
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY plans to give 30,000 shelter repair kits to those that were affected by the typhoon. To donate to the Disaster Response Fund, go here.
UNICEF is accepting donations to provide children affected by the typhoon with clean water, food and shelter. To donate online, go here. You can print a form to be mailed in by going here. Donate over the phone by calling 1-800-FOR-KIDS (1-800-367-5437).
SAVE THE CHILDREN is also working with affected children in the Philippines, Laos and Vietnam. Donate to the Typhoon Haiyan Children's Relief Fund by going here or by calling 1-800-728-3843.
WORLD VISION has launched an emergency response to provide food, clean water and shelter to an estimated 400,000 people. Donate online here.
WORLD FOOD PROGRAM USA is helping to provide food and other assistance to those affected. Donate online here.
CONVOY OF HOPE was already in the Philippines providing assistance to those affected by the 7.1 magnitutde earthquake that struck there a few weeks ago. They're expanding their efforts to include assistance to typhoon victims. They currently have four shipping containers full of food en route to the Philippines and are preparing containers full of hygiene pouches, canned foods and fruits as well as 100 water filtration units. To donate online, go here. You can also donate by calling 1-417-823-8998.
INTERNATIONAL MEDICAL TEAMS CORPS sent a team with medical supplies to assist with the injured affected by the typhoon. You can go here to support their efforts online or donate to the organization by calling 1-800-481-4462.
BBB Wise Giving Alliance cautions donors to avoid the following five giving mistakes when making disaster relief donations:
MAKING A DONATION DECISION BASED SOLELY ON CHARITY’S NAME - Charities ranging from well-known emergency relief organizations to organizations experienced in reconstruction will likely be soliciting for various relief assistance efforts. Make sure the appeal specifies how the charity will help. If it does not, visit the charity’s website. Also, watch out for charity names that include the name of the disaster – it could be a start-up group with little experience or a questionable effort seeking to gain confidence through its title.
COLLECTING CLOTHING AND GOODS WITHOUT VERIFYING THAT ITEMS CAN BE USED - Unless you have verified that a charity is in need of specific items and has a distribution plan in place, collecting clothing, food and other goods may end up being a wasted effort. Relief organizations often prefer to purchase goods near the location of the disaster to help speed delivery and avoid expensive long distance freight costs. Also, sending non-essential items may actually slow down the charity’s ability to address urgent needs.
SENDING DONATIONS TO INEXPERIENCED RELIEF EFFORTS - Good intentions alone are not enough to carry out relief activities effectively. If the charity has not previously been involved in disaster relief, or does not have experience in assisting the overseas nation(s) that have been impacted, this likely will hamper their ability to work well in the affected areas.
RESPONDING TO ONLINE AND SOCIAL MEDIA APPEALS WITHOUT CHECKING - Don’t let your guard down just because the appeal is online. Don’t assume that since a third-party blog, website or friend recommended a relief charity that it has been thoroughly vetted. Check out the charity’s website on your own.
DONATING WITHOUT DOING YOUR HOMEWORK - Find out if a charity meets recognized accountability standards. If you want assurance that the charity is transparent, accountable, and well managed, see if it meets the BBB Wise Giving Alliance’s 20 “Standards for Charity Accountability” by visiting give.org. The following 25 organizations are BBB Accredited Charities (i.e., meet all 20 BBB Standards for Charity Accountability) that have announced on their website that they are accepting donations for typhoon relief activities. Donors are encouraged to visit the charities’ websites to find out more about the nature of the assistance they are providing. Some organizations are engaged in immediate relief while others are focused on longer term recovery efforts. This list does not include all of the charities involved in typhoon relief.
Visit www.give.org if the organization you are considering is not on this list:
- Adventist Development and Relief Agency International
- AmeriCares Foundation
- American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee
- American Red Cross
- Catholic Relief Services
- ChildFund International
- Children International
- Direct Relief International
- Episcopal Relief and Development
- Feed The Children
- GlobalGIving Foundation
- Habitat for Humanity International
- Heifer International
- International Medical Corps
- Lutheran World Relief
- MAP International
- Mercy Corps
- Operation USA
- Oxfam America
- Plan International USA
- Save the Children Federation
- The Salvation Army
- United States Fund for UNICEF
- World Food Program USA
- World Vision