Why you should send donations through donor agencies

by Jon Carlos Rodriguez, ABS-CBNnews.com

Posted at Nov 15 2013 10:10 AM | Updated as of Nov 16 2013 03:26 AM

A member of the South Korean Red Cross checks emergency relief goods, for victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, at Incheon Airport Cargo Terminal in Incheon. Photo by Reuters, Yonhap

MANILA – Despite a number of donor organizations stepping up to join in the relief efforts in typhoon-hit Visayas, some are still choosing to collect and send their donations independently.

While these independent donations are welcome, the humanitarian program coordinator of Oxfam, Paul del Rosario, believes that sending donations through a centralized system is more effective and efficient.

On ANC’s “On The Money,” del Rosario said independent collections run the risk of not meeting the international humanitarian standards.

He said standards have to be followed to ensure that the goods are effective and will be useful to the recipients.

“It’s not just about giving whatever you want and feeling good about it,” he said.

Del Rosario also said sending donations through an agency will be cost-efficient than sending goods through personal means.

Chito Maniago, PR head of League of Corporate Foundations, also said donor agencies have a logistics system in place for emergency situations.

“You really need to collaborate with institutions that are credible and have means to transport goods from one area to another,” he said.

Del Rosario added that organizations are transparent in how they spend and ship the donations.

Oxfam, for instance, shares their funds even with beneficiaries at the community level. Oxfam is also able to track their expenses with the help of United Nation’s Financial Tracking Services.

The League of Corporate Foundations also closely monitors its expenses.

The League of Corporate Foundations is an association of major corporate foundations that aims to synergize its sources to maximize its relief operations.

“No one company has all the resources to do the extensive work for the typhoon victims ,” said Maniago.

Oxfam, on the other hand, is an international NGO that provides humanitarian services to people who have been hit by natural disasters and conflict.

Oxfam focuses on providing clean drinking water, sanitation, hygiene and emergency livelihood

“We all know that in an emergency, many people die but then what happens after the emergency, if people get sick and suffer from diseases then you will have more deaths. That’s what we are trying to prevent,” said del Rosario.

Oxfam plans to raise P620 million to serve at least half a million people in Eastern Visayas and Northern Mindanao affected by typhoon “Yolanda”.

Del Rosario noted that centralized leadership in the distribution and security are some of the issues that have to be addressed to make the relief operations in the Visayas more effective.