Thursday, January 14, 2010

Help for Haiti

Obama pledges $100 million;
a million Americans
could easily match it

I’ve got a cup of tea, some bread just out of the oven, a roof overhead, and a high-def, wide-screen TV which for hours has given me a window on the tragedy of a nation with virtually none of the above – just destruction and death.

I noticed on the CNN news-crawler at the bottom of the horrible scenes from Haiti that President Obama just pledged $100 million for emergency assistance.

The amount – well, it’s good start.

But I bet folks all cozy, like me, can add at least that much to the cause of helping a poor, besieged neighbor in the wake of an earthquake that is clearly among the worst natural disasters in recorded history.

Raising the money would be a snap – just a million Americans, donating at least $100 each, would match Obama’s $100 million. You can find a list at www.cnn.com of organizations engaged in relief efforts in Haiti, and pick one or more to receive your contribution – or find another from any of the many listings compiled by the print and broadcast media.

I chose the American Red Cross (http://www.redcross.org) , Catholic Relief Services (http://www.crs.org), IMA World Health (http://www.imaworldhealth.org), and Doctors Without Borders (http://doctorswithoutborders.org).

Now, if just another 999,999 folks could join in this little effort – well, we’ll all be contributing members of an enormous organization: Humanity.

There’s no membership card, but gifts to most if not all of the relief organizations are tax-deductible. And when you figure out how much your tax savings amounts to, use that money for another gift later.

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