When the earthquake in Nepal struck five days ago, I was at a weekend bachelorette party for one of my oldest friends. Phone off, laptop down, focused on the Bride. For me, that’s pretty unusual.
Billions of Aid Dollars Spent: Why Isn’t Haiti Ready for a Hurricane?
Cholera in Haiti: UN Report of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights
Aidworkers Pen Protest Letter: Cite ‘Callous Negligence’ at UN, Aid Organizations
World Humanitarian Day: Shifting the Focus from Aidworker Safety
How Turkey Coup Attempt Will Impact Aid Groups and Syrian Refugees
Closed Doors, Open Secrets: How the World Abandoned Millions of Syrian Refugees in Turkey
The Problem with Secret Aid
What Happened to the Aid? Nepal Earthquake Response Echoes Haiti
More Than 80 Major Local Aid Organizations in Nepal Left Out of Direct Funding
Nepal Earthquake $422 million Humanitarian Response: Less than 1% will go directly to local organizations
Documentation on the Nepal Earthquake
Off-Duty When the Nepal Earthquake Hit: Reflections on Preparedness, Living Life & Loss
Villagers in Cyclone-Ravished Takara Still Waiting for Their Good News
The Ecology of Aid: Lots of Organizations Play Complicated Roles
Photo Essay: Destroyed Vanuatu Rainforests Show Signs of Life
Why I Quit Moonlighting for Nonprofits, my interview on TinySpark
The Impact of Vanuatu’s Cyclone: It’s Bad, Very Bad
Telling the Story, “Born to Die” – How Nurse Mare Foals Are Getting a 2nd Chance at Life
The Secret Language of Aid: This Is Why No One Can Track the Money
The IRD Scandal and My Ethics Clause
Aid Worker or Journalist? Which job is more dangerous?
5 Years After the Quake: Haiti’s Rich Get Richer
Children We Met, but Can’t Forget
Peter Wilson is a proud Rotarian. He’d want me to say that up front. From March 25th to March 30 of this year, I traveled alongside Peter as he brought humanitarian aid to the people of Tongoa Island in the island nation of Vanuatu.
While working on my recent story about the village of Takara in Vanuatu, I discovered many organizations had been to visit Takara, but it wasn’t always clear why. Following disasters aid groups often overlap, fill gaps and sometimes work invisibly in communities. Even though the organizations start out with the same goal — “to help” — the way they achieve that goal can vary widely.
The forest is mute. Tree fallen on tree fallen on tree. Limb over limb.
After an overwhelming response to my story, “The IRD Scandal and My Ethics Clause,” I was interviewed by TinySpark, a podcast whose goal is to “investigate the business of doing good.” You can listen to the interview by clicking the orange carrot below. I’ve also included a full transcript of our conversation.
People saw the storm approaching for days. Meteorologists watched as it grew stronger, circling near the 80 islands of Vanuatu like a wolf eyeing prey. Tongoa, one of the 22 islands impacted, is only a few miles across in any direction.
Sue Morrow grew up as a “city kid,” dreaming about horses. Never given the chance to ride as a child, she decided to pursue her passion later in life, and in 2007, she bought herself horse riding lessons. It soon became clear that she would never become the great rider she’d dreamed of.
My dear readers, a confession: I could have told you the truth much sooner. I was stubborn.
During my time in Haiti reporting on the 2010 earthquake, I sometimes did one-off photo assignments for nonprofit organizations. It was a sweet gig. Despite their tax status, the “nonprofits” always paid far better than news outlets.