COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The live benefit concert on Labor Day, produced by our parent company Raycom Media, to benefit Louisiana flood victims is a fine example of targeting a specific need and helping generate donations to a specific charity.
Every penny raised during the concert goes to The American Red Cross in Louisiana, for Louisiana victims. Contrast that with the $13 billion raised after the Haitian earthquake in 2010.
A recent report uncovered massive fraud and misuse of a lot of the money raised for Haiti, which was mostly caused by governmental interference and obstacles unique to Haiti.
The Red Cross in Haiti had so many problems getting things done there, they gave some funds they raised to other groups who then, unfortunately, squandered much of it.
Even so, The American Red Cross did help tens of thousands of Haitians with immediate housing and fresh water.
When devastation hits, especially close to home like the Baton Rouge floods, our instincts are to help.
Money is usually the best donation because often shipments of clothes and home goods are not suitable or desired by disaster victims. But knowing who you are giving money to is the key to making sure your donation helps make a difference.
The Red Cross in the US is widely seen as a well-run, well-organized charity we can trust. They provide meaningful help with housing and other needs in the stricken neighborhoods where floods or fire or tornadoes change people's lives forever.
Supporting the Red Cross and especially their local efforts is the right thing to do and it does make a real difference.
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