When a string of reports surfaced about the American Red Cross in 2015 regarding the $500 million they had raised in donations after the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti, people were outraged: Out of the half a billion dollars the American Red Cross had managed to fundraise, only six permanent homes were built for victims of the earthquake.
After ARC promised to rebuild homes and neighborhoods in Haiti, many Haitians waited for the relief efforts. What they received was, instead, nothing. One of ARC’s plans was to rebuild hundreds of permanent homes in Campeche – one of the neighborhoods strongly affected by the earthquake. To this day, Campeche remains untouched and neglected, absent of any evidence that relief efforts were conducted. Nearly six year later, 55,000 Haitians are still living in temporary homes, like tents and makeshift shelters.
ARC explained that the reason for these failed goals was that not enough individuals in their organization were able to speak Creole, leading to miscommunication when creating housing contracts for certain areas in Haiti. Others state that extremely poor management skills and lack of expertise led to a mishandling of their money.
And now with the unfortunate disaster of Hurricane Matthew along with the cholera outbreak in 2010 that is still ongoing, many Haitians are urging people not to donate to the American Red Cross: If ARC had managed to fundraise so much and yet fail to fulfill promises of long-term solutions such as housing, what makes them think that they will help this time? In events of tragedy, many people will donate in hopes that their money will contribute to a greater good. And in the case of Haiti, civilians want donations to go to an organization that will succeed in their objectives – to them, ARC is not one of the organizations.
The death toll in Haiti from the hurricane alone is at 1,000 and is still climbing. More than 66,000 houses destroyed, 22,000 injured, around 350,000 in need of assistance. Many of civilians are left without homes, food, or water. Add on 10,000 victims from the cholera outbreak, and many Haitians are in dire need of aid.
However, many of the country’s affected want people to donate to other relief organizations besides ARC:
Instead, some are providing alternate, Haitian-led charities that possess a better track record than ARC for handling donations. Such organization that you can donate to are:
All are well regarded charities in terms of Financial Performance, and Accountability and Transparency.