In a disturbing report by National Public Radio (NPR), investigative correspondent Laura Sullivan revealed that only six homes were built out of the nearly $500 million in funds raised by the Red Cross after the 2010 Haiti earthquake. That disaster claimed the lives of over 200,000 people and the Red Cross raised funds on the basis that it would help the nation recover. According to the report, the Red Cross did not build any new schools or rebuild any of the broken infrastructure.
While the charity claims it provided shelter for more than 130,000 people, only six permanent residences were built. In the investigation, NPR and its partner, ProPublica, found a litany of projects and programs that were being poorly managed. Spending practices were “questionable.” All of this amid claims of successes that could not be verified or quantified.
The Red Cross did fulfill its core mission of providing emergency disaster relief –which included temporary shelter, food and blankets –for those displaced by the tragedy. However, the unprecedented amount raised was done so on the premise that the charity would help Haiti rebuild. And, according to NPR, this is something that the charity has “very little experience in…”
So where did the money go?
According to the former Prime Minister, Jean-Max Bellerive:
A Red-cross spokesperson stated, “We have provided, through our public website, where the money has gone by sector, and we stand by the accuracy of that information.”
But according to the NPR report, the Red Cross’ own documentation indicates that the funds never reached the people in need. Much of the work commissioned by the charity was passed on to secondary groups who actually fulfilled the hands-on work that was done in the nation. These groups, of course, charged additional fees and expenses which reduced the amount that actually went to rebuilding Haiti.
And after the Red Cross’ traditional administrative cut, poorly administered programs, and poor oversight, six houses is all that is tangibly visible from the nearly $500 million raised.
Read the entire story HERE.