January 12 Haiti earthquake: How you can help!

The violent earthquake that struck Haiti on January 12, 2010 has devastated millions of Haitians. It is estimated that anywhere between 50,000 to 200,000 has died; images coming out of Port-au-Prince also show extensive infrastructure damages. Needless to say, the entire world is shocked.

If you’re wondering how you can help Haiti, your best bet is to donate money to a registered charity of your choice. Please do not donate food and clothing – monetary contribution is best because it allows charity organizations to save valuable time and transportation costs by purchasing relief goods locally. Also, as reported by numerous media outlets last week, the federal government will match the generosity of Canadians dollar-for-dollar, up to a total of $50 million.

There are several organizations you can donate to, both through text and through the web.

Sending donations through text
As reported by CBC News, you can easily donate $5 through your cellphone.

Through a system set up by the Mobile Giving Foundation — which was created by Canada’s largest wireless companies in September — cellphone users can send donations of $5 to:

Sending donations online
Some organizations accepting donations for Haiti relief includes the following:

Please note that to avoid potential fraud, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) encourages you to make sure that your preferred charity is registered.

For answers for most frequently-asked questions regarding the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund, visit the CIDA website.

By Kelvin Claveria