I told you so.
Apparently, jumping in to try and help with a disaster can be a disaster.
In case you don’t have time to read the whole article, here are a few highlighted points:
1. Do NOT jump up and fly to Haiti: Unless you are trained, equipped, prepared, and with a group of people who are ready to do work, you will be in the way. Also, living conditions are extremely difficult, and ill-prepared helpers sometimes end up needing help themselves.
2. Do NOT clean out your closet: Most donations of clothes, food, water and medicine are extremely expensive to transport. A $1 can of peas may cost up to $80 to deliver. Prescriptions and out of date medication cannot be distributed. Clothes are extremely hard to sort, size, and distribute. Better to give these things to a local food pantry or Goodwill–and throw away the medication if you are no longer taking it.
3. Money is the best way to help right now: A one-dollar donation can be turned into $7 worth of supplies, as aid workers partner with bulk distributors to get supplies. Money is needed more than anything else right now.
Again, take the time to get organized, informed, and prepared. Be there in the future, after others have forgotten about Haiti. They will need you at a later time. For now, they mostly need your prayers and your money.
For a list of organizations that are collecting and distributing donations, check out this blog:
Also, WorldVision has assisted in Haiti for years, and may be the most equipped relief organization on the ground at this time: