How to Volunteer in Haiti
As devastating images continue to emerge from the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti, many Americans are wondering what they can do to help. While most relief agencies say donating money is the best way to contribute to the cause, we know that many Tonic readers have their hearts set on doing something more.
The fact is, hands-on opportunities exist in Haiti right now—and the need for volunteers is expected to grow in the weeks and months to come.
At Tonic.com, part of our mission is to make it easier for you to get involved. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of organizations that need volunteers in Haiti. If you have skills that you believe could be useful in rebuilding Port-au-Prince and the hopes and dreams of the Haitian people, these organizations want to hear from you.
Log on to the appropriate Web site. Make that phone call. Take that extra step, and get involved.
1. Medical workers are sought by The International Medical Corps, a global nonprofit dedicated to saving lives and relieving suffering through health care training and treatment. IMC is taking applications for volunteer doctors and nurses, with a particular need for nurses. Go to their Web site at www.imcworldwide.org and click on the “How You Can Help” tab.
2. The Washington, D.C.-based Visions in Action, an international nonprofit committed to achieving social and economic justice in the developing world through grassroots programs, seeks an earthquake relief volunteer immediately for a two to four-week trip to Haiti to assess needs and determine how VIA can best respond to the crisis. Please send a cover letter, CV, and the contact information for three references to: firstname.lastname@example.org for immediate consideration.
3. The Global Volunteer Network is now working to implement a long-term, sustainable volunteer project in Haiti. Once their team of specialists determines needs, GVN will send in volunteers over the next twelve months, with a likely start date of March onwards. Volunteers are needed from one week to six months to help with working with children; teaching; health/medical; building and construction; counseling; or business development. You can find more information at www.globalvolunteernetwork.org/haiti/.
4. Massachusetts-based Ministries of Aides International, a humanitarian organization focusing on needy children worldwide, urgently needs volunteers to help distribute supplies and assist nurses and physicians in their work to help the victims of the earthquake. If you are interested in volunteering, contact Wladimir D. Lahens at 617 -250-8516, email email@example.com or visit their Web site at www.ministriesofaidesinternational.org.
5. Over 7,000 registered nurses have already answered the call from their union, the National Nurses United, to volunteer in Haiti. If you are a nurse, you can call 1-800-578-8225, visit www.nationalnursesunited.org or fill out a volunteer form at www.calnurses.org/rnrn/rnrn-volunteer-form.html
6. Boston-based Partners in Health urgently needs orthopedic surgeons, trauma surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurse anesthetists, nurses, post-op nurses, and surgical technicians. They are unable to accommodate any volunteers without significant surgical or trauma training and experience. Applicants can fill out a form here.
7. While the Red Cross isn’t accepting volunteers to travel to Haiti now, there will be a need down the road for more medical personnel, translators and others who need to receive appropriate disaster training now. The Red Cross asks potential volunteers to contact their local Red Cross chapter for this training.
8. Both medical and non-medical workers can register to volunteer their services with the Center for International Disaster Information (CIDI), based in Washington, D.C. Relief agencies browse through the listings to find volunteers who match their needs. The CIDI, funded by the United States Agency for International Development’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, promotes activities and donations to help disaster victims around the world. You can visit the CIDI’s registration page at www.cidi.org/reg_off.htm or call 703-276-1914.
9. The Anir Experience, based in Lewisburg, West Virginia, is assembling three teams of volunteers to travel to Haiti July 3–17, 2010. Teams will be 15 members each for either construction, first-aid/health care or child care. For more information go to www.anirfoundation.org/Haitipage2.html or contact them at Programs@anirexperience.org.
10. Habitat for Humanity International is currently assessing response options in Haiti. Once the organization knows the full magnitude of the disaster, Habitat will require support from volunteers. Contact www.habitat.org to register to volunteer or for updated information on its needs.
12. The Christian Reformed World Relief Committee, which has been working with churches and community organizations in Haiti for more than thirty years, is not clear on whether or not additional volunteers will be needed for CRWRC’s response. Those who are interested in volunteering should call Carol Sybenga at 1-800-730-3490 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
13. World Hope International, a faith-based relief and development organization based in Alexandria, Virginia, will mobilize volunteers to assist their Haitian staff and communities in clean-up and rebuilding once the work of its first responders ebbs. Visit their Web site for more information.
14. For more information on volunteer positions as they arise, regularly check Idealist.org. Also, check out InterAction, a coalition of NGO’s with a regularly updated list of its member organizations involved with Haiti at www.interaction.org/crisis-list/earthquake-haiti.
Originally published on Tonic.com