Exceed Haiti donation goals

On Jan. 12, a devastating earthquake struck off the coast of Haiti, near the capital, Port-au-Prince. Haiti is the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. Its ability to provide for its people has long been a national problem unto itself. Now, a country already effectively devoid of infrastructure is undergoing a humanitarian crisis whose horror is difficult to overstate. Food, water, and basic medical supplies are scarce, travel and communication difficult.  Though the rescue efforts continue, the task now at hand is the care of Haiti’s thousands of sick and dying and the maintenance of what social order Haiti still has left.

Student Union President Jeff Nelson, in a school-wide e-mail, announced SU’s intention to raise $20,000 by next Monday for the aid organization Partners in Health. Nelson has already pledged $500 from the budget and has further promised an additional dollar for every $40 of student contribution. Students interested in contributing should visit  http://su.wustl.edu/help-haiti for more information. We should treat this $20,000 as a mere baseline, and work as a community to surpass it.

While the list of what Haiti needs is long, the best thing you can give now is money. An alternative to the SU fundraiser is donating money independently via wireless cell phone text messages—a way to help ensure that help gets to Haiti as soon as possible. This new method of donating has raised unprecedented amounts of money and has proven to be an effective way for college students. Below is a list  (vetted by cnn.com and charitiynav

igator.org available online) of charities and aid services’ text-to-aid numbers. If you have your phone with you, please take it out and give what you can.

We applaud this innovative use of technology that allows millions more to contribute to Haiti than otherwise would, but we urge that you extend your interest beyond the mere dollars you donate with your phone. Haiti was a country deserving of aid well before the earthquake and will continue to be, well after its plight no longer cycles through our national media outlets. Here is a list of charitable organizations to which you can donate:

Red Cross: Text HAITI to 90999 ($10 donation)
UNICEF: Text UNICEF to 20222 ($10 donation)
Clinton Foundation: Text HAITI to 20222 ($10 donation)
Yéle Haiti: Text YELE to 501501 ($5 donation)
United Way: Text HAITI to 864833 ($5 donation)
International Medical Corps: Text HAITI to 85944 ($10 donation)
World Food Program: Text: FRIENDS to 90999 ($5 donation)
UN Foundation: Text CERF to 90999 ($5 donation)
Compassion International: Text DISASTER to 85944 ($10 donation)
International Rescue Committee Text: HAITI to 25383 ($5 donation)
The Salvation Army: Text HAITI to 52000 ($10 donation)
Cure International: Text CURE to 85944 ($10 donation)