Last night I shared a link to the Red Cross, which is collecting donations via SMS for earthquake relief efforts in Haiti. I was very glad to hear that the Red Cross has raised more than $1.2 Million via its SMS campaign in a single day. That’s very impressive considering they did it $10 at a time.
From what I hear, the Red Cross is one of the organizations best prepared to turn donations into action in Haiti and I sent an SMS over to donate $10. That’s not nearly enough.
I’ve been fortunate enough to travel around the world and witness the horrible conditions that too many people have to live in. I can’t imagine what life is like in places like Haiti after a natural disaster is layered on top of the struggles of daily life.
Last night I had dinner with my parents and Haiti was the topic of conversation. My father (who’s made his career in construction) and I looked at a lot of photos and video of the devastation. Besides the horrendous human suffering, we both noticed two things: 1) the buildings in Port au Prince were lacking in basic structural reinforcement. 2) There was no heavy equipment in sight.
My family and I survived the 1989 earthquake. Besides a few broken household items and shaken nerves, we made it through thanks to San Francisco’s relatively solid infrastructure, extensive emergency services and strict building codes. Not everyone was as lucky and of course we still worry when (not if) the next big one will hit. In fact, last weekend I had a panic attack when I was in Las Vegas and I heard there was a major quake in Northern California.
Doubling Down on SMS Donations to the Red Cross
Today I’m going to spend less time working and see if I can use most of my time for the greater good. To start, I’m going to personally match the first $500 of Red Cross SMS donations that members of the mobile tech blogging community donate to the Red Cross. All you need to do is leave a comment below letting us know that you donated at least $10 to the Red Cross via SMS.
To donate via SMS, just send a text message to “90999” with the word “HAITI” in the message body. You’ll receive a confirmation message confirming that you want to donate $10 to the Red Cross. Reply with the word “Yes” and you’ll get a $10 charge on your next bill.
Don’t forget to leave a comment on this article so I can send another text message to match your donation. If AT&T has a limit on how many times I can send an SMS, I’ll match your donation with a check.
I realize that some of our readers are going through financial difficulties and that it may be impossible for you to do donate to the Red Cross. If you’d still like me us to donate $10 on your behalf just ask and leave a comment with a link to an article on Notebooks.com, GottaBeMobile, Gear Diary, Mobility Minded, Technologizer, WindowsPhoneToughts, Gear Live, Served Raw, SlashGear or GeeksRoom that you’ve found interesting.
UPDATE: Additional Matching Funds are Pouring in!
Several generous individuals and companies are joining us and augmenting the Red Cross SMS campaign donations. Below is a running list of who’s pitching in matching dollars. Remember, in order for them to match the funds, we need to know that $10 donations are being made via SMS. Leave a comment below.
I just received a video message from Scott Jordan, CEO of SCOTTEVEST. In the message he pledged $2,500 in matching funds for the Red Cross SMS campaign. Thank you Scott! Please watch his kind message here:
Judie Lipsett of Gear Diary just let me know that she’d like to match an additional $250 of tech blog readers’ donations. Thank you Judie!
Carly Zekzter of Gear Diary is adding $100 to the matching funds pool so we can match tech blog readers’ donations. Thank you Carly!
Dan Cohen of Gear Diary has graciously added $150 to the matching funds pool. Thank you Dan for your generous donation!
Johan van Mierlo of Mobility Minded just sent me a DM on Twitter offering an additional $100 in matching funds. Thank you Johan!
Andru Edwards, the publisher of Gear Live and video blogger extraordinaire just sent me an email pledging $500 in matching funds. Thank you Andru!
Harry McCracken, editor of Technologizer and a fantastic geek role model, just sent me a message on Twitter and has pledged an additional $250 in matching dollars. Thank you very much Harry!
The team from Ivy Worldwide, which is responsible for doing some great social media outreach for companies like HP, AT&T and others, just emailed us and let us know that they’re pitching in $500 for the SMS matching effort. Thank you Chris, Geoff, Nick and team!
Ed Hansberry of WIndows Phone Thoughts just added an additional $250 to the tech bloggers matching pool. Thank you Ed!
Jason Dunn of Thoughts Media Inc. asked me to add $250 to the pool on his company’s behalf. Thank you Thoughts Media and Jason!
Warner Crocker of GottaBeMobile and his gracious wife Thomasin have added $100 to the SMS matching pool!
Ewdison Then from SlashGear just sent Judie Lipsett a message on Twitter saying that his team would like to add $120 to the matching pool! Thank you to everyone over at SlashGear and R3 Media!
Mike Temporale of Mobile Jaw said he would pitch in $230 to bring the matching fund up to an even $6,000! Thank you Mike!
Helena of Chip Chick is kicking in another $150 for the matching fund. Thank you Helena!
This means we’re up to $6,150 in matching funds. That’s $12,300 in Red Cross aid if our readers donate $10 each! Please help us reach this goal by giving it to the Red Cross by making your own SMS donation.
My friend Andru Edwards from Gearlive decided to really step up and launch another matching fund for Haiti to augment our efforts! Not only has he put up $500 of his own cash, but he’s raised another $5,150 in matching funds from the GearLive community and friends!
The great thing about Andru’s giveaway is that all of the donors over at GearLive will match your $5 donation to Yele or $10 to the American Red Cross each time someone donates (up to their stated maximum). This means that each of the 13 donors will match your donation, which means your $10 SMS can have a $130 impact!
Together with Andru, we’re up to $11,300 in matching funds! If all of our readers pitch in that’ll be over $18,000 raised for Haiti.
How we can do even more
I’m going to reach out to some friends in the mobile tech industry and ask if they’d be interested in helping us match mobile SMS donations to the Red Cross above my initial $500 limit. The mobile tech community spent a large fortune last week in Las Vegas to celebrate and promote mobile tech. If you or your company has some spare cash to match GBM and Notebooks.com readers’ donations, please contact us. Those who match donations will be recognized prominently on GottaBeMobile.com and Notebooks.com. If you’d rather stay anonymous or donate in someone’s name that’s fine too. You can shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We might not be able to raise millions like some organizations can, but we can help the Red Cross do a little more.