Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Sending Support After Haiti's Darkest Night

“Parliament has collapsed. The tax office has collapsed. Schools have collapsed. Hospitals have collapsed.”  — President René Préval of Haiti

Just in case you live in a bubble (which is entirely possible if you're a judgements, peeps - being a Mama is hard enough without having the added responsibility of having to use up extra valuable brain cells on things like the news. But never fear, that's why you have me!), you might not know that there was a devastating earthquake in Haiti yesterday (Tuesday, January 12, 2010 at around 5pm local time). Besides being the poorest country in the western hemisphere, recently the people of Haiti have endured violence, political instability, famine, and the devastating effects of Hurricane Hanna in 2008

Here is a brief rundown, including what you can do to help:

What happened:
Around 5pm local time, a catastrophic magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti.  It was centered approximately 9 miles away from the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince.  Many of Haiti's major landmarks, including the Presidental Palace and the National Assembly Building were destroyed during the earthquake and subsequent aftershocks.  The extent of the devastation is still unclear but there are fears that the casualties may number more than one hundred thousand.  Simply and utterly heartbreaking.

You can watch BBC News coverage immediately following the earthquake here.

Watch President Obama's remarks concerning Haiti here.  Or read the transcript here.
See Haitian-born Wyclef Jean's interview with Anderson Cooper on CNN here.

What You Can Do:
Donate.  Please.
Here is the Washington Post's list of organizations that are currently accepting donations to help Haiti.
These are the donation pages for Wyclef Jean's Yele Haiti Earthquake Fund, The American Red Cross International Response Fund, and Oxfam America's Haiti Earthquake Respond Fund. (If you are outside of the US, please donate through your country's website, and please do link to it in the comments below.)

You can also text donations. Text YELE to 501501 for a $5 donation to Yele Haiti or text HAITI to 90999 for a $10 donation to the American Red Cross. (Please note however, texting will NOT work in Canada. Donate online instead)

If you do nothing else, spread the word.  Link to this post.  Share it, tweet it, retweet it, whichever works for you. Let's send some light before the sun goes down tonight on the people of Haiti.

Strength Through Unity. L'Union Fait La Force.

We are thinking of all Haitians, everywhere, today.  Our hearts are with you.

A view of the Canape-Vert area of Port-au-Prince shows hundreds of homes destroyed by the earthquake.  Picture from Reuters.
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