Haiti: Donations, Yes! But Do We Really Need a Celebrity Telethon?


The horrible earthquake in Haiti has put out a worldwide call for action and aid. There are numerous reputable charities working to get aid to the devastated country, while disaster relief teams from the US and elsewhere on their way, and others already in place.

Musician Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti has set up a texting donation program; by texting “Yele” to 501501 you can donate $5 or visit and click “Donate.” Jean told The Insider

Haiti today faced a natural disaster of unprecedented proportion, an earthquake unlike anything the country has ever experienced. I cannot stress enough what a human disaster this is, and idle hands will only make this tragedy worse. The over 2 million people in Port-au-Prince tonight face catastrophe alone. We must act now.

Unik Ernest, a New York nightlife entrepreneur whose whose Edeyo Foundation has built a school and provides meals, books and libraries for children in Port Au Prince told that his famous friends like Mark Wahlbergand Tommy Hilfiger

called him and offered “to support any initiative (Edeyo is) planning at this moment,”

Ernest also claims he’s planning a telethon and a benefit concert

tentatively scheduled for the first two weeks of February. Celebrities he says will be involved include: Rihanna, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ashton Kutcher, Usher, John Legend, Mariah Carey, Jamie Foxx, Wyclef Jean, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Kerri Washington, Susan Sarandon and others.

I’ll take a wait and see on that. That energy, effort and money for setting up a concert and telethon could go directly to charities like Save the Children, Unicef, and The Red Cross which also has a texting program in place– you can donate $10 to help rescue Haitians by texting the word HAITI to 90999 — and a $10 charge will show up on your phone bill.

Other options include


or Doctors W/o Borders

or the AFL-CIO Solidarity Center Earthquake Relief for Haitian Workers’ Campaign

The 150,000-member National Nurses United issued an urgent call last night through its nationwide  disaster relief network to recruit nurse volunteers to assist Haiti. Twitter updates here:

The Fire Fighters union also is mobilizing. Search and rescue teams from Fairfax County, Va., and Los Angeles County, Calif., Locals 2068 and 1014, are preparing to head to Haiti to aid in the rescue efforts. Other teams are likely to follow.

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Lisa Derrick

Lisa Derrick

Los Angeles native, attended UC Berkeley and Loyola Marymount University before punk rock and logophilia overtook her life. Worked as nightclub columnist, pop culture journalist and was a Hollywood housewife before writing for and editing Sacred History Magazine. Then she discovered the thrill of politics. She also appears frequently on the Dave Fanning Show, one of Ireland's most popular radio broadcasts.

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