The last post here at Green Your Decor wasn’t exactly the happiest one I’ve ever written. However, it was something I felt I had to write. This post isn’t all rose petals and rainbows either, but I feel equally as compelled to ask for your support for our brothers and sisters in Haiti.
It’s hard to imagine what they are going through. One 7.0 earthquake was enough to literally shatter their world to pieces, but a second tipping the scales at 6.1 has rocked them to the core. An earthquake of this magnitude is life-changing no matter where it happens, but the abject poverty that existed in Haiti even before this disaster has certainly amplified its effect.
I want to feel hopeful for Haiti, but it’s terribly difficult to do so in the face of photos and news coverage from ground zero. It is tough for me to watch, particularly when I see children who have lost everything that they have ever held dear. Knowing that there are hundreds of thousands of people just like them makes me turn the TV off. But the knowledge that I’m sitting here watching it unfold from the comfort of my sofa is a reminder that we are better off than so many. So no matter what we are going through as a family, we can’t afford not to help.
So today, I am asking all of my readers to help them in some way — any way — if you haven’t already. Below, you’ll find a list of organizations and campaigns that are delivering aid in Haiti. Please, donate through one of these, or any organization you see fit, but just donate.
- Red Cross: You can make an online donation (minimum amount: $10) directly to Haiti Relief & Development or you can donate $10 via their text message campaign by texting “Haiti” to 90999. The $10 donation will appear on your next mobile phone bill.
- Salvation Army: Make a donation online, or donate $10 by texting “HAITI” to 52000.
- International Medical Corps: They are providing medical care for crush injuries, trauma and more. Donate online or via text message by texting “haiti” to 85944.
- UNICEF: Make a secure online donation directly to their relief efforts for children in Haiti. 100% of these donations will be used for this purpose.
- Oxfam: This organization has been in Haiti for years, long before the earthquake. The have sent more people there to respond, and they are on the ground providing clean water, shelter and sanitation. Make a secure online donation in any amount to do directly to their efforts.
- World Vision: Their efforts are varied, providing everything from food and care, to PUR water packets and family survival kits to the citizens of Haiti. Pick your preferred type of support and make a secure online donation.
- Care: They are planning a five-year response to the disaster, which will help Haiti both in the immediate future and in the long-term. Make a donation online now.
- Clinton Bush Haiti Fund: Former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush have come together to provide support via the Clinton Foundation. Make a donation online.
- Habitat for Humanity: Habitat has worked with Haiti for more than 25 years and will continue to serve the people there by helping to rebuild. Make a donation to their efforts.
- Music For Relief: The group is offering an album of unreleased music, available for free download. The site encourages donations, which will be divided equally among the United Nations Foundation, Habitat For Humanity, and Dave Matthews Band’s BAMA Works Haitian relief program.
While most organizations are asking for cash donations, some are accepting in-kind donations of clothing and other items. Even if you can’t give money right now, maybe you can go through your closets and cupboards for items to give.
- K.I.D.S. (Kids in Distressed Situations): Fill out their online form to begin the product donation process. They are accepting items like clothing, shoes, accessories, toys, books and more.
- Aéropostale: Drop off your gently worn jeans at any Aéropostale store now through February 14th and the first 100,000 pairs will go to homeless teens in Haiti. The retailer has agreed to match the number of jeans going to Haiti, so with your help they can send 200,000 pairs of jeans to teens who need them via the Teens for Jeans initiative.
- Phones for Haiti: Donate your old cell phones to this organization, which will refurbish and sell the phones in developing countries as an alternative to new models. The full value of each donated phone is then contributed to the American Red Cross. Non-functional phones, batteries, and chargers are also accepted, and shipping of your phones is free.
- Swagbucks: Donate your Swagbucks, which the company will then convert to a cash donation to go directly to relief efforts in Haiti. If you are not a member of Swagbucks, click here to sign up. Swagbucks allows you to earn points for doing things like searching online, shopping, referring friends and more. The points can be redeemed for items like gift cards, video games and more. This is a much better use for them, and it costs you nothing. I just donated all of my points. The deadline for donations is 12 p.m. PST on Friday, Jan. 22, 2010.
Give while you shop
Some retailers are setting aside a portion of their profits to go directly to Haiti as well. I wouldn’t recommend shopping just for this purpose, as your funds could be better spent directly donated to a charity helping in Haiti. But if you are shopping anyone, support retailers who are giving back. I’ve only found a few thus far, but I’ll add more as I find them:
- 2Modern: 10% of their profits through Jan. 31 will do directly to UNICEF and Care.
- Threadless: They have created a t-shirt design for Haiti relief. 100% off the proceeds from the sale of this shirt up to $100,000 will go to the Red Cross. The shirt says “Men anpil chay pa lou” (Translation: “Many Hands Make the Load Lighter”) and costs $10.
- Mountains of the Moon: They are donating 20% of their profits through Jan. 22 to the Red Cross.
- Celebrate Green book: Authors Lynn and Corey are donating $12 of the $17.95 purchase price of their book to the relief efforts in Haiti if you buy it directly from their site.
We can’t afford to help now, only to forget about the Haitian plight next week, or next month, or even next year. Haiti will need our support for years to come if they are ever to rebuild, hopefully better than before. You can find a more comprehensive list of ways you can donate from the Huffington Post.
NOTE: The posting schedule — and topics — will start returning to normal now that I am past the initial shock of my daughter’s diagnosis and have a better idea of what my schedule will look like. I can’t promise I’ll post daily, but I’ll do my best to continue bringing you fresh green content and home decor inspiration, so stay tuned!