Corporations Give $16M to Haiti

Corporations have already donated a combined $16 million to help Haiti, USA Today reports. Digicel, the Caribbean's largest mobile-telecommunications operator, led the charge with a $5 million donation, while Microsoft donated $1.3 million, and Abbott Labs, Coca-Cola, Lowe's, and UPS donated $1 million each. Companies from Wal-Mart to FedEx and Western Union have each contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars. According to The Conference Board, a global organization working for the public interest, recent natural disasters such as Katrina have helped corporations find more effective use for their aid money than in the past, when huge sums were given without an understanding of what a hard-hit area needed or what the money would be used for. For example, UPS has established long-term relationships with aid organizations, and through its contacts it figured out that roads in Haiti are impassable, so they've asked people to give cash, not goods.