I feel really guilty admitting this, but up until today, the last time I donated money to the American Red Cross was after 9/11. I was working as a full-time staffer for the Weekender then, and my editor, Thomas Ritchie, suggested we all pitch in and (to my knowledge) all of us gladly helped out.
As anyone who’s ever donated knows, after that you’ll occasionally get some literature from the Red Cross asking for further donations. They don’t send them very often, though after looking at what’s happened with the tsunamis it’s a shame they don’t. I got those requests, yet they always seemed to arrive at a time when there was something or another that needed my financial attention. I did donate blood, but looking back now I know I could have done more.
It’s so easy for us to think if we can’t donate $50 or $100 or something halfway substantial, it won’t really make a difference anyway. It will. The Red Cross’s online website allows donors to give as little as $5. Think about how fast that can add up. Or how fast $10 adds up.
In addition to the Red Cross, CNN has an online list of relief organizations dedicated to helping the victims of Sunday’s tragedy. There’s Doctors Without Borders, CARE and UNICEF just to name a few. We’re all in this together.
I know what one of my New Year’s Resolutions will be.