Thursday, January 14, 2010

Haiti-Donor Beware!

It has been difficult to take pictures of or even think about food because of the events in Haiti.

The desperation of a country that on a good day was already very badly off, plays constantly in my head. I feel somewhat guilty to be going about my daily activities, while thousands of people have suffered such terrible loss. I know many of you feel the same way.

The many dead in Haiti deserve, at least, a pause in my frivolous food-writing routine. To the living I send prayers, some clothing, food stuff and monetary donations. It is hardly enough to compensate for the loss of homes and loved ones.

My pocketbook is open.....everyone that I know is giving with abandon. We all want to help. Yet, may I urge you please, don't be reckless with your donations. Let us make sure that the money we give, actually gets to Haiti.

The Huffington Post reports that credit card companies rake in a big profit on fees when you use your card to make a donation! Another web site, (Washington AFP) claims that card companies make as much as 250 million dollars in profit a year from charitable donations.So before you donate, do your research and ask questions.  Some credit card companies are getting on board by waiving fees. Find out before you use your card to make a donation if your company is one of these.

Today, my mobile phone company sent me a text informing me that there was no charge for texting a donation. Sounds good right? But I still have questions.

What percent of the money donated will actually be sent to Haiti?

How and when will information about monies donated be published?.

For my part, I am going to stick with local chapters of International charities that I already know to be reputable, for example the Red Cross. No johnny-come-lately charities will be getting my money. Click here for a handy list of reputable charities as rated by the American Institute of Philantrophy. Great advice on giving intelligently can also be found here at Charity Navigator



  1. Nice Post! I'm trying to find places to give clothes to from her in Big D and thinking of spear heading a drive.

    Of course you know my new favorite charity is Partners in Health

  2. I'm with you and support you - nothing is more frustrating that finding money sent for someone in dire need is being pilfered. Thanks for the information and updates.

  3. Thank you so much for the information. You are so right. We donated, but didn't use a credit card, but I'll be careful from now on. So sad, my daughter was in Haiti a few years ago on a mission trip. Just brings it closer to home. Great post!

  4. Thank you for the warning...thats is always the problem with donating . you never know whether the money u send is going to reach where u intended. tq again. our hearts go out to thepeople of Haiti

  5. I never even thought of the credit card companies taking a cut from charitable donations. That's one "charity" that doesn't need any help :( I try and go for charities that don't have too much of an admin fee but this is something to consider too.