Letter: Cash the best way to help

(U-WIRE) MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The American Red Cross, in its relief efforts for the victims of Hurricane Katrina, has repeatedly asked for donations of money only.

Many Americans want to give and help in any way that they can, and sometimes giving only money doesn’t seem like enough, or it seems impersonal. So donors instead try to come up with items that will be useful to evacuees. These efforts, while well-intentioned, have a negative effect. From the perspective of an organization trying to manage an efficient effort, donated items aren’t very helpful.

The Red Cross can take up donations and, through the magic of technology, funnel those funds to the appropriate areas in mere moments.

And there’s just no way to anticipate every material need in cleaning up after this disaster. Money gives relief organizations the flexibility to get what they need when they need it.

Major corporations may also give relief organizations discounts on products purchased in bulk for humanitarian purposes. Individual donors can’t buy on that large a scale.

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    So to do one’s part in donating to the Katrina relief effort, give as much as you can — in cash only.

    Staff Editorial

    The Daily Athenaeum (West Virginia U.)