Friday, January 15, 2010
Wyclef Jean Helps Raise Over $1 Million in Haiti Quake Aid u CAN HELP 2!
On Wednesday, estimates put the death toll up to 50,000 dead.
Via a series of tweets, an appearance on CNN, and the help of media and famous friends, Wyclef mobilized a massive effort in which followers text “Yele” to 501501 to donate $5 to the effort.
According to MTV, Miami-based Give on the Go CEO Albe Angel — the mobile-communications company working with Yele Haiti to coordinate donation — helped the organization in relief efforts since the earthquake, pushing them to over $1 million. Yele’s goal is to reach up to $1 million a day as part of the SMS fundraising drive.
“Since the disaster occurred around 5 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday and [by] midnight [Wednesday] we cleared $1 million,” Angel, whose company provides the technology that allows mobile users to make an automatic $5 donation, 100% going directly to Yele Haiti. “These types of donations really were spawned by the  tsunami relief effort, and the $1 million that Yele has raised already is a watershed event.”
He says more than 200,000 people have donated to the cause, and he thinks it’s possible that the $1 million-per-day goal could be reached, given the volume of donations that have been coming in.
In addition to Wyclef’s efforts, other celebs such as Brad Pitt’s and Angelina Jolie’s Jolie-Pitt Foundation has pledged $1 million to the emergency medical operations of Doctors Without Borders.
“It is incredibly horrible to see a catastrophe of this size hit a people who have been suffering from extreme poverty, violence and unrest for so many decades,” Jolie said in a statement on Wednesday (January 13).
Many have taken action via Facebook and Twitter to do their part to help, retweeting and pledging their own donations.
On Thursday (January 14), President Obama pledged $100 million in aid from the U.S. The United Nations also announced that $10 million would go to relief efforts in Haiti, while the World Bank pledged $100 million.
For more info, or information on how to donate, visit Yele.org. Or, for full coverage of the Haiti quake, head over to CNN.com.