Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Something for Haiti When Doing "Nothing"

I was going to write a bit tonight on how things break and need repair and need attention right in the midst of a "30 days of nothing" effort - but the news from Haiti is cause for pause.  I just wrote this instead:

It's true, I'm doing the 30 Days of Nothing - but the earthquake in Haiti is SOMETHING, not nothing, and exactly the sort of situation in which thoughtful preservation and utilization of resources allows for good (better!) global citizenship.

When Mr. Silly Pants and I shared the news we immediately decided to dedicate some of our monthly resources to Haiti earthquake relief. I'm in the process of researching to whom we'll be sending our contribution. I appreciate any suggestions. You all know I'm and MSF (Doctors Without Borders) supporter, and I'll be calling my MSF contact tomorrow for some update on their work on the ground. They just posted an update on their website. Several other sites already have "donate" buttons up and functioning. But, I am not yet ready to name the source of our funds - I always have to check and recheck to make sure our funds are being used well, aren't supporting a behemoth administration, and are used in ways that agree with my moral/spiritual/political/social justice compass. I won't spend too much time figuring this out, but I do believe in due diligence.

Our family prayers and deep consoling thoughts go to the people of Haiti. The earthquake is devestating and horrible news for a country gripped by the ravages of poverty. About 80% of Haitians live in absolute poverty, with 54% living in abject poverty. Haiti is, in fact, the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, and among the poorest in the world.  Over half the adult population is illiterate due mostly to the lack of access to education and books and the need for children to work from very young ages. 65% of Haitian children will never finish elementary school and 80% won’t ever attend high school. Access to healthcare in Haiti is nearly non-existent. Over 60% of the population lacks access to even the most basic healthcare services. Disease is rampant, overcrowding is extreme and employment is next to nothing. More than two-thirds of the workforce have no regular jobs. Those who do work often make only about $2 a day in US equivalent wages.

These are HEARTBREAKING statistics....it's time to act as good global neighbors. Please join our family and do something - anything. Haiti is less than 2 hours from Miami, this is a country of neighbors. Please be a good neighbor and help.


Mindy and Baldwin said...

Let us know where you decide to put your donations. We,too, are deciding which charity to use for this one. As you know, we are going to that corner of the world next week. If we didn't have Dew Drop, we'd be able to do some direct help (though we'd probably just be in the way).

Waiting for Zufan! said...

i'm here in Phoenix, awake because I'm running tomorrow, awake thinking of Haiti and life and suffering and what it's all about. Thanks for the great post. It seems so silly and selfish to put energy into running a marathon when all that real pain is happening in Haiti. I can't get images of Haiti out of my mind. Overwhelming, all of it.