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Haiti in Need
January 28, 2010

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"Like the end of the world."A quote comes from a survivor of the catastrophic 7.0 earthquake that rocked Haiti last week.

The International Red Cross estimates 3 million people may be in need of help. Current death toll estimates are 50,000 - 100,000+. In this desperate situation some 2173 miles away, I watch news coverage and media. There are undoubtedly many acts of kindness and generosity. But the situation is a bit overwhelming. Sitting comfortably in a warm home in Fort Dodge Iowa, I wonderhow could I help?

I located this information on a USA Today website and I found it most interesting. This tells what these organizations are doing to help. If you are interested I encourage you to go to their websites to find out more information.

Disaster relief and non-governmental organizations:

You can make a donation through the American Red Cross' International Response Fund, and it will be allocated specifically for Haiti relief efforts.

Action Against Hunger has mobilized an emergency response and has teams already on the ground, assessing and responding to needs.

CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty.

Doctors Without Borders needs donations to provide crucial medical treatment and supplies.

Habitat for Humanity has been working in Haiti for 26 years and will be sending a team to assess the impact on affordable housing after the earthquake.

The Lions Clubs International Foundation is working through local Lions clubs members in Haiti.

Project HOPE, which provide medical supplies and health care services to those in need, is seeking donations for its aid efforts in Haiti.

Save the Children says that at least 2 million children or more have been affected by the earthquake.

UNICEF is working hard to help Haiti's children.

The United Nations World Food Program has teams "already on the scene, mobilizing emergency food assistance to families."

The United Way is accepting online donations to its United Way Worldwide Disaster Fund, which will directly benefit relief efforts in Haiti;

Faith-based organizations:

Baptist Global Response, which coordinates the mercy efforts of the Southern Baptist Convention, is sending a team from Florida to help for its initial outreach. In addition to donations, the organization asks that concerned individuals join in focused prayer for Haiti's 9 million people.

Catholic Relief Services (CRS) has made an initial commitment of $5 million for immediate use in the relief effort. According to its press release, the CRS offices in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, "were shaken, with some damage to the compound walls, but there were no injuries in the building."

Christian Aid Ministries, an Amish-Mennonite organization, has had staff and a distribution network in Haiti for over 20 years. To help earthquake survivors, they are providing search and rescue operations, emergency supplies such as medicines and food, and later on rebuilding of houses.

Compassion International, the world's largest Christian child development program, serves 64,000 sponsored children in Haiti, most near the earthquake zone.

The Lutheran Church Missouri -- Synod along with the mercy arm, LCMS World Relief and Human Care, announced it was making an initial grant of tens of thousands of dollars available to meet emergency needs.

The North American Mission Board for the Southern Baptists has more than more than 90,000 trained disaster relief volunteers and more than 2,000 disaster relief units including feeding, water purification, showers, laundry and communications.

Operation Blessing International also has disaster relief teams on the way. A donation of $50 or more will bring emergency food, water, medicine and more to the quake victims.

The Salvation Army is also sending personnel and supplies to assist in the relief effort and is in need of donations.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) has long been working in Haiti.

World Vision, a Christian humanitarian charity organization, is also working to help children and families devastated by the quake.

The White House, which has pledged $100 million to help Haiti, has also set up a webpage with information on how to help.

You always wonder if your donation is really going to help the people who need it. Listed are a few resources to back up the credibility of the listed organizations. Visit InterAction.org to obtain its list of credible responding agencies for international emergencies, and www.give.org or CharityNavigator.org to get valuable information on making informed decisions when supporting charities.

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