I'm trying to decide where to send my donation toward the relief efforts. Everywhere I look, I'm seeing us steered toward the American Red Cross. Art said I should check the Charity Navigator. They do give you lots of helpful charity advice. I do believe I will wait a tiny bit first to see what the charities' plan of action is before I decide where to send my money. Right now they're evaluating what and where aid should be directed toward. Some charities are directed toward short term aid and other toward long term assistance. You should also make sure your donation is going specifically toward the Japan Earthquake Relief.
I just saw this interesting information which is great.
March 14, 2011 02:03 PM Eastern Daylight Time
MasterCard Worldwide Provides Support for Japanese Relief Efforts
PURCHASE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MasterCard Worldwide announced that it will provide support for the Japanese relief efforts following the tragic earthquake and tsunami. Interchange fees on Japanese relief donations that are made using U.S. issued MasterCard cards to the following organizations will be waived: American Red Cross, AmeriCares, Doctors Without Borders, International Rescue Committee, Save the Children and World Vision.
In Canada, interchange fees on Japanese relief donations that are made using Canadian issued MasterCard cards to the following organizations will be waived: Canada Helps, Canadian Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders, International Rescue Committee, Save the Children and World Vision.
I'm leaning toward the IRC (International Rescue Committee), Doctors Without Borders or perhaps the American Red Cross. My cousin in Hawaii told me that several Hawaiian banks have established funds that will go toward the Red Cross efforts in Japan. We'll keep monitoring the situation and make our decision in the next couple of days.
(Art just showed me a news article warning people to be cautious of scams that have suddenly popped up. The article said to be wary of online solicitations, watch for phony names, examine web addresses, don't pay in cash, check with the charity, resist pushy demands and do your homework.)
By the way, isn't it incredible how there hasn't been any cases of looting going on? Everybody seems willing to wait patiently for hours in lines that stretch to eternity for food and water, sharing whatever they have. I wish every disaster could be met with the same determination and desire to survive together.
POSTSCRIPT: My friend, Nancy just sent me an e-mail suggesting Direct Relief International. It does indeed sound like another great place to send donations.