Humanitarian response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake

Humanitarian response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake
A survivor pulled from the debris of the Hôtel Montana

The humanitarian response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake included national governments, charitable and for-profit organizations from around the world which began coordinating humanitarian aid designed to help the Haitian people. Some countries arranged to send relief and rescue workers and humanitarian supplies directly to the earthquake damage zones, while others sought to organize national fund raising to provide monetary support for the nonprofit groups working directly in Haiti. OCHA and ReliefWeb are coordinating and tracking this on a daily basis.[1] As of March 21, 2010, Reliefweb have reported a total relief funding of $2.5 billion given and a further $1.3 billion pledged.[2]

A number of countries sent large contingents of disaster relief, medical staff, technicians for reconstruction and security personnel. Notably, the governments of the United States, Israel ,the Dominican Republic, Canada, Brazil, Italy and Cuba[3] sent over 1,000 military and disaster relief personnel each, with the United States being by far the largest single contributor to the relief efforts. The international community also committed numerous major assets such as field hospitals, naval vessels, a hospital ship, aircraft carriers, transport aircraft and emergency facilities soon after the extent of the disaster became apparent.

Progress in responding to the almost unprecedented scale of disaster was hampered by numerous factors, including major loss of life, multiple large aftershocks, devastated civil infrastructures, collapsed buildings blocking streets, the lack of electricity for gasoline station pumps, plus the loss of the capitol's seaport and air traffic control facilities. Additionally, the significant damage to the Haitian government ministries, all of which suffered varying degrees of destruction and personnel deaths, further impeded coordination of the disaster response.

In April 2010, the Haiti government asked that massive food distribution in the Petionville camp cease in order to allow the normal economy to resume.[4]


Appeals for aid

Appeals for international aid were issued, including by Raymond Joseph, Haiti's ambassador to the United States and his nephew, singer Wyclef Jean,[5] also a "roving ambassador" for Haiti.[6] The American Red Cross quickly announced that it had run out of supplies in Haiti and appealed for public donations.[7] British charities soon launched a massive fundraising effort.[8] Ireland, which as a country has a history of helping Haitians build houses and has notable connections to Haiti through charities Concern and GOAL, telecommunications operator Denis O'Brien and broadcaster George Hook,[9][10][11] immediately switched all its charitable efforts to helping those affected by the quake.[12]

Response by national governments

Rescue supplies delivered to Haiti from US Navy ships

Response by intergovernmental organizations

Commonwealth realms

Queen Elizabeth II, monarch of each of the Commonwealth realms, made a donation to the relief effort and issued a personal message of condolence to the President of Haiti.[13][14]


In early January 2010 the EU released €3 m in emergency funding.[15]

The European Council and its member nations later announced more than €429 million (US$600,000,000) in emergency humanitarian aid, rehabilitation aid and medium-to long-term reconstruction aid.[16] The aid was to be provided as detailed:

Humanitarian Assistance

The EU pledged €122 million in humanitarian assistance: Emergency relief aid package: €30 million (incl. a €3 million ECHO fast-track decision). Commission funds were to be distributed via UN agencies, international NGOs and the Red Cross. €92 million from member countries.

Support for Early Recovery and Reinforcing State Capacity.

The European Commission pledged to provide €100 million for short term recovery and rehabilitation.

Reconstruction and Rehabilitation.

The European Commission pledged to provide €200 million from the 10th and 9th EDF funds for Haiti. They would be in addition to bilateral contributions from EU Member States' budgets. [17]

The European Union thus pledged at least €429 million to Haiti in both emergency and humanitarian aid to help the medium and long term work of rebuilding the country devastated by the earthquake. In addition, the 27 countries decided to send some 150 troops from the European Gendarmerie to ensure that humanitarian aid would reach the people affected by the earthquake.

The financial contribution of the EU as a whole totaled €429 million, broken down as:

  • €92 million coming from contributions made by Member States,
  • €30 million from the European Commission itself,
  • €107 million from existing EU funds that were being redirected to Haiti, and another
  • €200 million shuffled for the medium and long term rehabilitation.[18]

Organization of American States

The Organization of American States donated US$100 000.[19]

Union of South American Nations

The Union of South American Nations pledged US$300 000 000 to help rebuild Haiti on long terms. A meeting was held in Quito in order to discuss how it would be utilized.[20]

United Nations

As the extent of the catastrophe unfolded, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commented: "There is no doubt that we are facing a major humanitarian emergency and that a major relief effort will be required". The U.N. mobilized an emergency response team to help coordinate humanitarian relief efforts.[21]

  • The Security Council authorised an increase of 3,500 troops and police of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti in Resolution 1908.[22]
  • The World Bank provided extra funding of $100 million to support recovery and reconstruction in Haiti.[23]
  • UNICEF made an emergency appeal for assistance to aid the victims.[24]
  • The World Health Organization sent a "12-member team of health and logistics experts."[25]
  • The World Food Program provided over 200 staff members on the ground, with their rapid-response team supporting the entire humanitarian effort."[26]
  • The International Atomic Energy Agency sent eight mobile medical X-ray machines to Haiti.[27]
  • The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs established a coordination office in Haiti to coordinate the international relief effort in support of the Government of Haiti.[28]

Response by non-governmental organizations

Many non-governmental organizations, including international, religious and regionally-based NGOs, immediately pledged support in the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. NGOs contributed significantly to both on-the-ground rescue efforts and external solicitation of aid for those rescue efforts.

Response by corporations

Notable responses by private persons and groups

  • Jennifer Aniston announced a donation of US$500,000 to Doctors Without Borders, Partners in Health and Americares.[29]
  • Charles Aznavour and Youssou N'Dour recorded a music video called Un geste pour Haiti cherie for French television that appeals to viewers to donate to the earthquake relief.[30]
  • Sandra Bullock donated US$1,000,000[31]
  • Gisele Bündchen donated US$1,500,000[32]
  • Samuel Dalembert donated US$100,000 to UNICEF [33]
  • Leonardo DiCaprio donated US$1,000,000.[34]
  • Jean-Claude Duvalier announced that he would ask a foundation set up in the name of his mother to transfer an estimated £5,000,000 (US$8,000,000) of its assets to the American Red Cross.[35]
  • Evanescence released a previously unreleased track, "Together Again", originally intended for inclusion on but was later cut from their album The Open Door, as a charity single on January 22, 2010. The track was available as a free download to anyone who donated to the United Nations Foundation.[36][37]
  • Lady Gaga announced that proceeds from her New York concert would go to Haiti relief,[38] which is later revealed to have raised more than US$500,000.[39]
  • Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt donated US$1,000,000[32]
  • Madonna donated US$250,000[32]
  • Alyssa Milano donated US$50,000 to UNICEF, and challenged any corporation to match her donation.[40]
  • Denis O'Brien pledged €3.5 million.[41]
  • Carlos Pena donated US$15,000[42]
  • T-ara of South Korea donated $10,000 of their own income for the disaster.[43]
  • James Taylor performed a January 22 benefit concert for Haiti at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.[44]
  • Miguel Tejada personally delivered humanitarian supplies.[45]
  • John Travolta piloted his private jet to Haiti on January 26, 2010, bringing six tons of ready-to-eat military food and medical supplies plus several doctors and ministers.[46]
  • Olivia Wilde promised to send a personalized thank-you video to anyone who donates $200 or more to Artists for Peace and Justice.[47]
  • Oritsé Williams donated an undisclosed sum to the Disasters Emergency Committee relief effort and left a blog post on the band's website urging fans to donate as well.[48] In the post, Williams revealed that he had family that were killed by the earthquake.[49]
  • Tiger Woods donated US$3,000,000[50]
  • Charlie Simpson, a seven year old British boy from Fulham, south London, who initially aimed to raise £500 ($800) by cycling round his local park in London, raised more than £200,000 (US$300,000) for UNICEF via Internet donations from around the world on his JustGiving page.[51][52][53][54][55] Charlie's fundraising effort gained national and then international coverage, and by the end of the day of his sponsored bicycle ride his JustGiving webpage had amassed donations of over £60,000 ($96,700) from donors all over the world.[55] Two days later (as of 26 January 2010) the total stood at over £150,000 ($240,000).[56][57] By 27 March 2010 the total stood at £210,000.

Response by online communities

  • Avaaz: users raised over US$800,000 as of January 16.[citation needed]
  • GSN: members of Game Show Network could donate their earned oodles in denomination of $10, $25, and $50. As of 1/26/10 over $25,000 has been raised.
  • writers raised money for the Helium Relief Fund through donated article earnings and through a charitable Write For Haiti contest.[58]
  • Reddit: users raised over US$178,000 as of February 15.[59]
  • Belfast4Haiti: members of the underground music scene in Belfast, Northern Ireland set up a citywide fundraising campaign and as of 2nd Feb 2010 over £37,000 had been raised.[60]
  • GaiaOnline: matched donations made by its members up to US$10,000 to the American Red Cross.
  • myYearbook: allowed members to donate lunch money to the American Red Cross via its Causes application.

See also


  1. ^ [1], The Guardian, 14 January 2010.
  2. ^ Reliefweb: Haiti Earthquakes funding tracker
  3. ^ Tom Fawthrop. Cuba's Aid Ignored By The Media?,, February 16, 2010. Retrieved July 14, 2010.
  4. ^ St. Pierre, Mary (April 23-May 6, 2010). "Rebuilding Haiti one small step at a time". Orlando, Florida: Florida Catholic. pp. A1. 
  5. ^ "Appeals for aid after quake strikes Haiti". CNN. 13 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2010.
  6. ^ Reuters (3 January 2007). "Wyclef Jean to be Haiti’s roving ambassador". MSNBC. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  7. ^ Press, Associated. "American Red Cross says it has run out of medical supplies in Haiti".,0,3443905.story. Retrieved 2010-01-15. [dead link]
  8. ^ "British charities launch huge appeal to help homeless and injured after Haiti earthquake". The Daily Record. 2010-01-10. Retrieved 2010-01-15. 
  9. ^ The Irish Times, "Irish charity to build houses in Haiti", Thursday, January 15, 2009
  10. ^ Niamh Hennessy, Irish Examiner, "Hook urges volunteers to get building in Haiti", Wednesday, January 13, 2010
  11. ^ Irish Central "Irish connections run very deep to Haiti", Tuesday, January 12, 2010 at 11:58 PM
  12. ^ Jamie Smyth, The Irish Times, "Aid agencies ask public for donations to help injured and homeless", Friday, January 15, 2010
  13. ^ Press Association (14 January 2010), "Brown urges Haiti quake donations", The Guardian,, retrieved 15 January 2010 
  14. ^ Royal Household. "Latest News and Diary > The Queen's message to The President of Haiti". Queen's Printer. Retrieved 15 January 2010. 
  15. ^ "RTÉ News: Charities appeal for Haiti earthquake aid". Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  16. ^ Sapa-AFP (2010-01-18). "EU earmarks over €420 million for Haiti". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  17. ^ . 20 January 2010. 
  18. ^ "EU nations pledge $575 million for Haiti aid - Yahoo! News". Retrieved 2010-01-23. [dead link]
  19. ^ "OAS donates $100,000 in aid to Haiti". Associated Press. 2010-01-15. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  20. ^
  21. ^ U.N. chief calls on world to help crisis-hit Haiti.
  22. ^ "Security Council authorizes 3,500 more UN peacekeepers for Haiti". UN News Centre. 19 January 2010. 
  23. ^ "World Bank to Provide an Additional $100 Million to Haiti, Following Earthquake".,,contentMDK:22440632~pagePK:64257043~piPK:437376~theSitePK:4607,00.html. Retrieved 2010-01-13. 
  24. ^ "Haiti Earthquake Children's Appeal". Retrieved 13 January 2010.
  25. ^ "WHO response in Haiti". Retrieved 2010-01-14. 
  26. ^ "WFP response in Haiti". Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  27. ^ Earth Times, "IAEA ships X-ray units to Haiti", 29 January 2010 (accessed 29 January 2010)
  28. ^ OCHA, "OCHA's Response - Fact Sheet", 29 January 2010 (accessed 9 February 2010)
  29. ^ "Aniston donates $500k to Haiti appea". Ireland Online. January 26, 2010. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  30. ^ "Charles Aznavour to record music video to raise funds for quake-stricken Haiti". Kuwait Times. January 18, 2010. Retrieved 18 January 2010. 
  31. ^ "Sandra Bullock Gives $1 Million to Haiti Relief". 
  32. ^ a b c Donaldson-Evans, Catherine (January 15). "Gisele Gives $1.5M to Haiti, Other Stars Step Up to Help". People.,,20337201,00.html. Retrieved 16 January 2010. 
  33. ^ "Samuel Dalembert of the Philadelphia 76ers supports UNICEF's emergency relief efforts in Haiti :: News from the Field :: Media Center :: U.S. Fund for UNICEF". Unicef Usa. 2010-01-15. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  34. ^ "Leonardo DiCaprio Donates $1 Million to Haiti Relief". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  35. ^ Haiti earthquake: 'Baby Doc’ Duvalier pledges £5m aid
  36. ^ "United Nations Foundation » Evanescence Teams Up with the United Nations Foundation". January 22, 2010. Retrieved 2010-01-22. 
  37. ^ "Welcome to the United Nations Foundation: Donate to the CERF". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  38. ^ Vena, Jocelyn (15 January 2010). "Lady Gaga Pledges Haiti Earthquake-Relief Donation On 'Oprah'". MTV. Retrieved 16 January 2010. 
  39. ^ "Lady Gaga Fans Raise $500,000 For Haiti". 27 January 2010. Retrieved 27 January 2010. 
  40. ^ "Alyssa Milano: My Tweet Challenge: Will A Corporation Match My Donation?". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  41. ^ Patricia McDonagh and Jason O'Brien, Irish Independent, "O'Brien pledges €3.5m as charities plead for money", Thursday January 14, 2010
  42. ^ "Tampa Bay Rays' Carlos Peña doing anything he can to help neighbors in Haiti - St. Petersburg Times". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  43. ^ "T-ara is donating $10,000 of their own income to Haiti". 2010-01-19. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  44. ^ "James Taylor to Perform Benefit Concert for Haiti at Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center". Theater News. 2010-01-19. 
  45. ^ "Miguel Tejada lleva ayuda a Haití". 2009-08-16. Retrieved 2010-01-23. [dead link]
  46. ^ "John Travolta flies aid and Scientologist group to Haiti". USA Today. January 26, 2010. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  47. ^ "'House' star Olivia Wilde in Twitter appeal for Haiti earthquake | Amy Andrews Gossip Girl". IrishCentral. 2010-01-13. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  48. ^ Oritsé talks of the disaster in Haiti,, accessed 01/19/2010
  49. ^ Ibid.
  50. ^ "Tiger Woods donates $3m to Haiti quake victims". 2010-01-15. Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  51. ^ BBC
  52. ^
  53. ^
  54. ^ James Meikle (2010-01-25). "Schoolboy Charlie Simpson raises £120,000 for Haiti". The Guardian. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  55. ^ a b "London boy raises £130k for Haiti quake aid by cycling". BBC. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  56. ^ "Charlie's Fundraising for Haiti page". JustGiving. 2010-01-26. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  57. ^ Agnes Teh (2010-01-25). "Boy, 7, raises $240,000 for Haiti appeal". CNN. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  58. ^ USA (2010-01-16). "Helium's Haiti Relief Fund - by Sarah Bedrick". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  59. ^ "Direct Relief International: Support Us - Tributes:". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  60. ^ "Belfast's Haiti Relief Fund". 2010-02-01. Retrieved 2010-02-02. 

External links

Emergency aid
Contacting friends and relatives in Haiti
Maps and photos

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries: