It has been sobering to watch the tragic events in Haiti unfold this week. Good friends of mine are stationed at the U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic, and had formerly been stationed in Haiti in the mid-1990s. They are both involved intensively in the relief efforts, the husband/father actually flew via helicopter today from the DR to Haiti. Please keep them, all the Haitians affected by this tragedy, and all the relief workers in your thoughts and prayers. I definitely am.

Please also DONATE MONEY for the relief effort, but be saavy to avoid the charity scams the FBI and other entities are warning about. I recommend making a donation directly to the Red Cross, either via their official donation website or (according to the Red Cross’ official blog):

You can donate $10 to Haiti relief by texting “Haiti” to 90999.

Snopes is always a good source to use when verifying the truth of Internet rumors, and they have a good page going for “Haiti Relief Efforts. They currently report “a mixture of true and false information” circulating via email, facebook, and other means about Haiti relief. They confirm the above text messaging instructions are valid for helping the relief efforts.

Here in the United States, most of us are immeasurably blessed by countless things we take for granted every day. The tragedy in Haiti should not only remind us of our geographic good fortune, but also move us to take action and assist those individuals as well as organizations reaching out to Haitians in need at this time.

As always, deeply developed and frequently updated English WikiPedia pages have been growing ever since the earthquake in Haiti happened and this tragedy started. See the articles “2010 Haiti earthquake,” “Casualties of the 2010 Haiti earthquake,” and “Response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake.” I’m amazed how many adults (including many teachers) completely dismiss WikiPedia out of hand as an information source because it is publicly editable. Events like this one demonstrate its value very clearly.

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