Hurricane Matthew tore through Haiti, leaving devastation in its wake. More than 800 people have been killed, and homes were left in ruins. People naturally want to help others, but knowing exactly what is needed can be difficult. If you want to aid Hurricane Matthew victims, it’s important that you go about it the right way.
Avoid sending care packages. You may have extra blankets, towels and even nonperishable food items in your house, but many regions are simply not set up to accept such donations. Not only can they not accept them, but they have no way to distribute them. If you would like to rid yourself of these items, one suggestion is to have a garage sale instead and donate the funds you raise.
Be careful of where you send your money. Experts agree that money should only be sent to charities that have less than a 20 percent overhead. You want to make sure that your money is going where you intend, not into the pockets of an organizer or the group’s board members. Take a look at sites like Charity Navigator or Guidestar to find reputable charities.
According to the FBI, there were at least 4,000 scam websites that popped up after Hurricane Katrina. It is best to avoid giving through a website that you have never heard of. It is also a good idea to avoid texting your donation. There are costs associated with this that will make your actual donation less. Do not donate through Facebook or other social media sites.
If you want to assist victims in the United States, wait until organizations like the Red Cross begin to solicit them. As of this writing, damage from the hurricane was only just being assessed. Know where your money is needed the most and how you can be the most effective in the efforts to aid victims.
Hurricane Matthew was a powerful storm that left damage and destruction behind. It also left families without their loved ones. Helping where you can is an honorable thing to do. Just make sure that you are helping in a way that is beneficial to those who need it without hurting yourself.
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