Photo: Washington Post
Here we are, thinking about which handbag to buy for spring or which coral sandals would be great on vacation, or whether those jeans make our butts look big. In Haiti, people who already live in poverty have had even the little they have taken away by natural disaster. People are without the basics: food, water, homes, hospitals.
Every single one of us in the well-to-do countries of the world need to help. I'm not saying you have to send your whole paycheck or skip paying your electric bill this month. I'm saying look at your finances and give what you can, even if that happens to be just one dollar. If every American, for example, gave $1, that would be a whole mountain of dollars, right?
BEWARE OF SCAMS! 3 Trustworthy Ways to Give:
1. The International Red Cross. If you are in the US, you can send a text message with the word "HAITI" to 90999. You get a txt msg back asking you to confirm a $10 donation, and you text "YES" back. $10 charge to Red Cross will show up on your phone bill. You can do this up to 4 times. Alternately, visit http://www.redcross.org/
2. Wine to Water. Doc Hendley, one of the Ten CNN HEROES of 2009, has set up a special Haiti relief fund to help bring clean water to the disaster victims. The donation is through PayPal, so you can use either your credit card or bank account, and you can donate any amount from $1 to thousands. http://winetowater.org/
3. Yéle Haiti, Haiti-born Hip Hop artist Wyclef Jean's charity, is accepting txt msg and online donations. You can use your cell phone to text "YELE" to 501501, which will automatically donate $5 to the Yele Haiti Earthquake Fund, charged to your cell phone bill, or you can visit http://yele.org.
It is great that people are adding Haiti-relief messages to their Facebook statuses, or forwarding tweets on Twitter, but it's not enough. I'm asking every single one of you to step up and give, even if it's just one dollar. Thank you.