BEST WAY TO SUPPORT RELIEF EFFORTS IN SOUTH SUDAN
May 21, 2014
Thousands of people have died and more than a million
people have been displaced since civil war broke out in South Sudan in
December 2013. Because of the war a food crisis is underway, likely to become a famine.
The widespread displacement of people has interrupted the usual planting season, fishermen have had
to abandon rivers, and usually-bustling markets have been deserted.
In an appeal to international donors to help aid groups mitigate the
crisis, a United Nations press release says that "by the end of this year,
half of South Sudan's 12 million people will be either in flight, facing
starvation, or dead." The bleak situation has been made worse by a confirmed
cholera outbreak, which is likely to spread with the rainy season approaching
and so many displaced people living in makeshift shelters without access to
Funding for aid is urgently needed in South Sudan. Once the
rainy season is underway, more than half of the country will not be accessible
by road, and humanitarian groups will have to resort to expensive air-lifting of
food, medications, and sanitation equipment.
CharityWatch announces its top-rated list of charities
involved in efforts to provide relief to victims of the crisis in
South Sudan. CharityWatch, a leading charity watchdog that
issues letter grade (A+ to F) ratings of nonprofit groups, identifies
the following charities, which are providing aid to the victims
that receive an A or B grade based on the
portion of their budget going to program services and their fundraising
Note: Links will open in a new window
Top-rated charities perform favorably in relation
to CharityWatch benchmarks:
1) A charity should spend at least 75% of its budget on program
2) A charity should spend no more than $25 to raise $100.
Contact your favorite charities to find out if they
provide the specific types of aid that you would like to fund, e.g.,
emergency relief, health care, infrastructure development, education,
As with any charitable contribution, Americans wanting to help South Sudan
relief efforts should send contributions to only those charities
with an established track record of helping people in this region.
Disreputable, fly-by-night charities always exist to take
advantage of the publics generosity.
SEND A CHECK, NOT GOODS
The best way to help is by sending a check. Cash donations enable
charities to buy the most needed type of food, medicine, clothing,
shelter materials and other supplies. By buying relief products
locally or regionally, charities can reduce shipping costs and more
rapidly deliver assistance. Before sending any goods, first contact
the charity to find out if they are appropriate and if it will be
cost effective to distribute them. For example, after the tsunami,
boxes of donated winter coats, scarves and fuzzy hats, completely
useless items in tsunami stricken nations with tropical climates,
were sent to these nations.