Humanitarian Aid in Times of Disaster

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The following information is summarized from an article, “Guidelines for Appropriate International Disaster Donations” by the Center for International Disaster Information.

Offering Aid – Most Effective Way to Help

Cash donations to support the work of relief agencies working in disaster regions are the best way to help in times of disaster. For information about appropriate giving, links to lists of relief agencies responding to a disaster, situation reports from the field, and other relevant resources, please visit the following web sites:

The Center for International Disaster Information (CIDI) The Center for International Disaster Information is a conduit for information about international disasters and humanitarian relief, and educates the public on how to offer aid and assistance during a disaster. CIDI operates under a grant from the United States Agency for International Development’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance.

The American Council for Voluntary International Action (Interaction)

InterAction is an alliance of U.S.-based international development and humanitarian nongovernmental organizations, and lists on its web site the names, addresses, phone numbers and web sites of the relief agencies that are providing the humanitarian response for each disaster.

Donations of Food, Clothing, Medicine are Not Helpful

For the following reasons, well-intentioned and generous donations of food, clothing and medicine is not the appropriate way to help victims of natural or man-made disasters.

During times of disasters, scammers are busy trying to sell offers that may sound legitimate, but may be an illegal scheme or fraud. If you feel it may be a scam or have questions about a business, visit this “Better Business Bureau” webpage, where you can investigate scams or report one,


SOURCE: Center for International Disaster Information; American Council for Voluntary Action (Interaction)