Digital disaster relief

I've been writing all day but needed to take a break, to write, about new ways that technology is being deployed to help Haiti. This post will catalog some of the more distinctive tech + philanthropy responses that I've heard about or seen. These are limited to tech examples because tech is the driver of change in philanthropy I'm trying to understand. Offline, person-to-person, direct assistance, support and help are critical evidence of our humanity.

Please send me more examples. Email readers might want to check the blog directly as I hope to keep updating this post.

Finding people
Extraordinaries Photo tagging
Red Cross Family Finder
Haitian Quake Registry

Mapping and other "Hacking for Haiti" efforts
OpenStreetMaps and OpenStreetMaps Wiki Project
CrisisCamp Haiti - here is the list of projects generated
Cloud Camp Haiti

Coordination of funds, volunteer efforts
Ushahidi coordination center
UK Coordinated Disaster Relief

Volunteer connections

Creole- English translation/dictionary

Phone Apps
Mapping apps
and some others in development (translation, "we want, we need")

Twitter Feeds
Lazy twitter search terms

A call for developers to coordinate their coordination efforts - sharing and linking APPS -

And, in what may be a first for transparency (or spin) in the nonprofit sector, Wyclef Jean responds to criticism of his YELE Foundation with a YouTube video. (This is here as a tech example, not as commentary on the Foundation or its management).

I've already written about text donations. Today Ushahidi announced a free text code (4636 (International:447624802524) for people in Haiti to use to text their location and their need.

This podcast from PRI's The World also has some interesting examples.


Lucy Bernholz said...

A call for developers to coordinate their coordination efforts - sharing and linking APPS -

Thanks for pointing me to this, @thelonggive

Lucy Bernholz said...

Techies can also serve for MLK day - find opportunities here:

Jon Brooks said...

Hi Lucy,

At, we've set up a Haiti emergency matching fund with a number of wealthy donors contributing. This fund then doubles online donations from the public, who can choose from 12 charities providing aid.

Technology has made it really easy for us to contact donors, create the fund and publicise it to the public. As I write this, we're a few pounds away from hitting our £100k target.

Analysis of our previous challenge funds shows that this format encourages current donors to give a higher amount, and attracts new donors to give for the first time.

Good luck to everyone supporting the disaster response, and our best wishes to all those affected by the earthquake.

Jon Brooks

Haitiecole said...

Please help us continue schooling HAITI students online through our effort Classes started last week Monday and the kids are delighted. However we need donations to help pay for their cybercafe fees and their cell minutes so they may do homework.
Please contribute. Please help. No amount is too small, you'll make a difference in the life of a student, for sure.