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How You (and the Kids) Can Help Haiti

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The catastrophic quake in Haiti can be used to teach your kids some valuable life lessons.

haiti earthquake

Calvin Lowery: As parents, we should consistently look to make every moment, good or bad, a teaching moment. We have an opportunity to do that right now! As we all know, Haiti suffered a 7.0 earthquake on Tuesday. The Prime Minister of Haiti fears that hundreds of thousands have died.

This is a situation that could not have been anticipated by anyone. That was committed at the fault of no one. And will inevitably be felt by everyone.

Don't allow your kids to talk about this devastating event at school, watch reports about it on the news, and hear about it on the radio without seeing you become active -- and showing them how everyone can make a difference.

You have a choice: (a) give your time, (b) give your money, (c) help raise money, or (d) all of the above.

You can donate online to CARE or call them at 1.800.521.CARE or 1.800.521.2273. You can also take a peek at Fox News' list of organizations. CNN also has its own list for parents looking to help.

Everyone is in a different situation. You know what you are able to do. Show your kids that you do not have to have a lot to do a little. If everyone can do a little, a lot will be received.

There are millions of innocent victims in Haiti that are depending on you to stop thinking about yourself and start thinking about others. As I sit in my office working and preparing for a class, I can't help but imagine how fortunate I am to be able to give and not be the one who needs to receive. I am so fortunate to know where my kids are, and to know that they are safe.

As if the quake alone was not enough, the U.N. assistant secretary-general for peacekeeping operations has said that the national penitentiary collapsed, which resulted in the inmates escaping. So there is an additional fear of civil unrest.

For a brief description of why this quake's force is multiplied simply by the Haitians being the recipients of its wrath, read this short paragraph by the Associated Press:

"Endemic instability, murderous dictators, more than 30 coups and a seemingly endless series of hurricanes and other natural disasters have claimed countless souls over Haiti's tumultuous 206-year history, leaving it the Americas' poorest country and utterly dependent on foreign aid."

We are talking about a country where 80 percent of the people already live in poverty. Haiti ranked 149th out of 182 countries in the United Nations HDI (Human Development Index -- used to rank countries' level of human development). Haitians live off of less than our kids pay at school for lunch ($2.00 a day). Prior to the earthquake, 40 percent of the national budget was established with foreign aid. Now, take this country and subject it to the fury of a 7.0 earthquake.

Do you get the picture? Your help is needed now! Don't look back and regret your failure to act.

Please tell me what you think about the Haiti disaster, and also please post the experiences you have when you discuss (1) what has happened in Haiti, and (2) how you can help Haitians with your kids.

next: The Latest Haiti Updates: The Last 24 Hours
6 comments so far | Post a comment now
Bob Hynes January 15, 2010, 9:31 AM

Our church is looking for ideas to offer our kids for helping in Haiti. Perhaps something that they can DO, as opposed to a collection where they get money from their folks to donate. Any thoughts?

Anonymous January 15, 2010, 6:46 PM

NO money from me

Anonymous January 18, 2010, 10:37 AM

Our school is doing a shoe drive. We are asking all the kids to bring in their lightly worn shoes (mom and dad too) and then, through soles4souls, we are sending them to Haiti. Soles4souls teamed up with the Sports Chalet ( to send them to Haiti. Check your local listings or google Sports Chalet to see if there is a store in your area, or go to soles4souls on the web.

Shauna January 18, 2010, 1:14 PM

I have some stuffed animals my daughter is wanting to can I send them? Any info would be helpful.

tennmom January 18, 2010, 6:38 PM

I have read hours’ worth of articles the past few days about the billions upon billions of dollars that have been donated to them over the past few years and about how the government has wasted those dollars, used them to their benefit but not for the benefit of the people.
Billions of dollars going to their so-called government, yet there isn’t even basic medical facilities to help these people. Billions of dollars, yet the deceased are piled up along sidewalks. I wouldn’t send a single dollar unless someone could guarantee that dollar would be used to actually help a person in need.

tabletki na pryszcze April 3, 2011, 7:29 AM

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