The up-coming trip that I mentioned in the immediate preceding blog post? That was going to be to Manila, Philippines. But in a matter of minutes, plans can change, lives taken away, families torn apart. Super Typhoon Haiyan (locally called Typhoon Yolanda), one of the strongest storms ever to make landfall, is feared to leave as many as 10,000 dead.
I bleed for my friends in the Philippines, the warmest, friendliest, fun people I’ve ever worked with. My prayers with you.
If you want to help, consider donating to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). I have seen WFP at work; they are often the first to be on the scene of disaster anywhere in the World, with a good system for distributing needed supplies in a relatively efficient way (given all the difficulties of a broken infrastructure). Indeed, they’d have to be, given that they are the “emergency logistics coordinator for the entire United Nations”. Donating is easy via their website (credit card or PayPal payment accepted).
There are many other alternatives for donation, e.g. Red Cross Philippines (takes credit card and PayPal), UNICEF, International Committee of the Red Cross, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Update: CNN has a list of of organizations that can take your donation or other relief help, along with website links and contact info.