Day 519: The day the earth moved

As I’m sure you’ve heard, Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, was hit with a devastating earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010, that registered 7.0 on the Richter scale.

I wanted to make a donation to one of the relief efforts but got overwhelmed by all the information about texting and phoning versus web, and legitimate charities versus scams. Yikes.

The good news is, just when I finally figured out what I wanted to do, the federal government announced that it would match individual Canadian donations dollar-for-dollar to aid relief efforts — making my donation count for twice as much. For once, indecision paid off!

Post-earthquake devastation at a Haitian hospital.

I decided to donate to Médecins Sans Frontières Canada (Doctors Without Borders) — which is setting up clinics to replace damaged medical facilities in Haiti and working to bring more teams into the country — but the site must be overwhelmed with visitors because their “Donate Now” page says it’s “Temporarily Down for Maintenance”!

While I wait for it to get back online, I also made a donation to the Salvation Army in Canada relief effort. I don’t know if it’s the uniforms or their rockin’ band, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the Sally Ann.

If you’d rather donate by text message, you can now do so in Canada. Simply text:

  • “Haiti” to 45678 to donate $5 to the Salvation Army in Canada (Bell/Rogers only)
  • “Haiti” to 85944 to donate $5 to Rescue Union Mission and MedCorp International
  • “Haiti” to 25383 to donate $5 to the International Rescue Committee

You can also donate online to these organizations, or find other contact information on their sites:

Canadian Red Cross
Salvation Army in Canada
Médecins Sans Frontières Canada
Humane Society International
Wyclef Jean’s Yele Foundation
World Vision


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