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On Six-Month Haiti Earthquake Anniversary, Oversight Group Calls For More Transparency From Groups Soliciting Public Relief Donations

July 12th, 2010 · No Comments

On the six-month anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti, the Disaster Accountability Project (DAP) released a report today criticizing the lack of transparency by groups raising relief funds from the public.

The “Report On The Transparency of Relief Organizations Responding to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake”, according to DAP, is the result of an investigation aimed at determining whether those non-profit and non-governmental organizations that solicited donations for Haiti disaster relief produced situation reports on their activities, and if so, how comprehensive and publicly accessible such situation reports were.

According to its press release, DAP found that of the 197 organizations identified as soliciting money for their activities in Haiti following the earthquake:

• Only 6 had publicly available, regularly updated, factual situation reports detailing their activities.

• The vast majority, 128, did not have factual situation reports available on their websites, relying instead upon anecdotal descriptions of activities or emotional appeals.

• Only approximately ten percent, 21, were responsive to a survey requesting more information, and of those, a number provided incomplete answers.

“It is infuriating that so many groups continue to violate the public trust with so much cash-on-hand donated to alleviate suffering on the ground. Shouldn’t we expect more from groups that are raising hundreds of millions of dollars from a public asked to generously donate, immediately after the earthquake?” said Ben Smilowitz, Executive Director, Disaster Accountability Project (and a friend of this blog.)

The full report can be found here. It was released at the Natural Hazards Workshop.

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Tags: Earthquake Preparedness

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