Rachel Wolff 253.394.2214
SEATTLE (February 5, 2010) – Three weeks after the Haiti earthquake, experts at leading aid group World Vision, say the impact of a crippling recession and high unemployment on disaster donations has surprised them. The charity’s disaster fundraising expert Randy Strash says Haiti is an example of "compassion resilience," or Americans’ ability to remain generous in a mega disaster even as the economy makes giving difficult.
“To many Americans, the Haiti quake feels more like Katrina than the Asia tsunami. Haiti is right on our doorstep, many of us have travelled there or have family there. It feels closer, so we give more sacrificially, even in these tough economic times,” Strash explained.
World Vision, which has worked in Haiti for 30 years and began distributing aid within 24 hours after the quake, has raised more than $30 million in the US so far. This is roughly five percent ahead of the charity’s Asia tsunami fundraising at the same stage in the response.
World Vision, like many aid groups, has promoted a $10 text giving option—another new technology that invites more people to give, even as it sacrifices the potential for larger donations.
“We know many people giving by text are capable of a $20, $30, or $50 donation,” said Strash. “But part of World Vision’s mission is to help more Americans get involved in fighting poverty and saving lives—especially during mega disasters like the Haiti quake. Options like text giving allow us to invite more people to be a part of moments like this, when every donation counts.”
The Christian humanitarian organization warns it is too soon to tell if charities will reach the amounts raised during the tsunami.
“Rebuilding Haiti will take years, not months,” said Edward Brown, World Vision’s senior director of humanitarian and emergency affairs. “Compassion fatigue is not an option for our aid workers on the frontlines, and we are asking our donors and the public to stand with us for the long run as well.”
To date, a total of more than $30 million has been has been received. World Vision is appealing for at least $50 million in the United States alone for its emergency and long-term recovery response in Haiti. World Vision donors in the U.S. contributed $68 million after the Asia tsunami; most of that total was raised in the first several weeks.
To Donate to Haiti Earthquake Relief:
Log on: www.worldvision.org
Or Text: "Give" to 20222
Randy Strash has 30 years of experience at World Vision. He is available for interviews. Contact Rachel Wolff at 253.394.2214 or email@example.com.
World Vision is a Christian relief and development organization dedicated to helping children and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty. We serve the world’s poor —regardless of a person’s religion, race, ethnicity, or gender. For more information, please visit www.worldvision.org/press.