Help Haiti

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My heart goes out to the people in Haiti right now. They are suffering, they have been beaten down, and many tens of thousands have died – estimates range as high as 40,000 to 50,000 dead with 3 million+ being displaced and homeless. I have a horrible cold feeling that those numbers are low, no matter how hard I try to send good vibes to the people of Haiti.

There are things we can do, and right now the best thing we can do is send money to charities that are providing relief and assistance to the Haitian victims. Buit before all that – be really careful though – there are people who think you’re all a bunch of suckers, acting nefarious and profiting on the suffering of millions in Haiti. Unfortunately we have to take care in giving. Give money to charities with a history of helping in Haiti – not companies who just started up and have no idea. Also, give to reputable companies, not orgs trying to profit from others’ misery.

One such group that I would shy away from giving to right now is Wyclef Jean’s YELE Foundation – YELE has been paying Wyclef for a while, and “Internal Revenue Service records show the group has a lackluster history of accounting for its finances, and that the organization has paid the performer and his business partner at least $410,000 for rent, production services, and Jean’s appearance at a benefit concert.” That’s too bad, Wyclef, because whereas I thought “Gone Till November” was an okay song, now I think you’re a criminal scumbag. Everybody, give money to The American Red Cross instead of giving it to YELE, they’re just going to pay Wyclef. For details on this BS, check out The Smoking Gun’s listing of YELE’s tax returns.

So – places that I would feel comfortable sending money to for this cause would be (and each org is linked):

There is also an exhaustive list at Charity Navigator, with ratings and tax info for your own judgement.

Let’s help these people.