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If you were trying to find out where $488,000,000 in Red Cross donations went, after the Haiti earthquake, it’ll be a harder version of “Where’s Waldo”. According to a glaring report done by NPR, the organization seems to has mismanaged funds and did much of nothing for the area.

The report cites a lack of expertise in managing large construction projects, high turnover and overhead as well as land title issues as reasons for the massive shortfall in permanent housing. And to top it off, only 6 houses have been built!

From NPR:

The Red Cross says it has provided homes to more than 130,000 people. But the actual number of permanent homes the group has built in all of Haiti: six…

Other groups also ran into trouble with land titles and other issues. But they also ultimately built 9,000 homes compared to the Red Cross’ six.

Also listed in their budget shelter, allegedly $170 million was spent, that means each house was $28,000,000. Which is highly unlikely.

The report also claims the organization misrepresented how people were receiving the homes:

For example, while the Red Cross says it provided more than 130,000 people with homes, that includes thousands of people who were not actually given homes, but rather were “trained in proper construction techniques.” (That was first reported by the Haiti blog of the Center for Economic and Policy Research.)

The figure includes people who got short-term rental assistance or were housed in several thousand “transitional shelters,” which are temporary structures that can get eaten up by termites or tip over in storms. It also includes modest improvements on 5,000 temporary shelters.

Looks as though the Red Cross has some explaining to do. Read the rest of the report here.

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  • Me

    this is why they spent so much time turning away volunteers when it happened. folks who wanted to go down right after the earthquake to help were told no so that all these corporate “do gooders” could have their say on how donations got spent. i swear the world treats haiti like a toilet. they’ll fish in it if they see anything value fall in the bowl, but the rest of the time they just use it to dump their shit in.

    • Chazz A

      Agreed. 488 million doesn’t simply disappear. The Red Cross execs’ reluctance to disclose the procedures on how they spent the donations has undertones of corruption in my opinion.
      I saw the documentary about this controversy on PBS and it was an eye opening film. For instance, there were thousands of people living in a camp under horrible conditions, yet only several toilets were provided.
      There has been virtually no accountability by the Red Cross since this disaster struck 5 yrs ago.

    • Me

      it’s not just the red cross either. cnbc did a special a few nights ago about a guy who was taking donations from big time celebrities to supposedly build quickhouses that were easy to construct and made out of simple but safe materials. he got tens of millions of dollars from everybody up through jeb bush & obama personally. & the man ran off with all that money. folks took advantage of haitians in the midst of a horrible natural disaster & there seems to be no accountability.

    • [email protected]

      I agree with you.

    • Anonin

      He didn’t get caught lol? you just don’t steal from the president.

    • Me

      he did get caught but not b/c of obama. he was still a senator when it went down.

    • [email protected]


  • [email protected]

    What the Red Cross was evil. We know about the massive mismanagement of the money spent in Haiti. Some of the money has been controlled by international corporations and NGOs, who use the money to benefit a select few the masses of the Haitian people. Historically, Haiti has been a victim of French colonialism and American occupation. France especially should pay straight up reparations to Haiti. Again and again, we see how corporate oligarchs use the guise of “humanitarianism” as a means to economically and politically control nations like Haiti. Haiti is still heavily occupied by the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH).

    We know that the World Bank is funding luxury hotels in Haiti while thousands of Haitians live in camps. There is a necessity to build up not only Haitian agricultural resources, but to improve its infrastructure, which can help the Haitian people not a select group of corporations. Red Cross is not only culprit. There are others who economic exploit the Haitian people as well. We all commemorate the heroic black Haitian heroes (these heroes defeated the French, the Spanish, and the British) who freed Haiti in 1804 from white terrorists. We reject land grabbing, privatization, and occupation. We want black independence to not only exist in Haiti. We want that independence to exist worldwide for all black people. We have vigor. We have strength. We have soul and we feel. We will continue to fight for our freedom and justice as one people.

    • BillipPhailey

      I can guarantee that more than a few black-led organizations got a hold of this money. RC is an umbrella organization, a clearinghouse of sorts.

      Most of Haiti’s exploiters are overwhelmingly mixed people who now live in Miami.

      Nobody is coming to save Haiti, it’s up to Haitians to build the necessary infrastructure they need.

    • [email protected]

      Exploiters exist in many backgrounds. That’s true. Yet, the people who originated the exploitation of Haiti in that level aren’t people of color. It is just that the exploiters are more diverse now than centuries ago. Haitians should build their necessary infrastructure (along with reparations sent to them), but I don’t believe in austerity, I don’t believe in isolationism, and I do believe that many people internationally are sincere in trying to help the Haitians. It is just that evil people from around the world have an evil, neoliberal agenda too. The world must change via international cooperation at times as history shows. The Maafa ended by international activism. Also, pan-African unity is important. Regardless of our nationality, we are all of black African descent. We are interconnected with each other indirectly or directly.

    • Tony

      NGO, non-governmental organization. Or CIA, as some people refer to them.

  • Rizzo

    sounds like everybody got paid — except the victims at the bottom of the pyramid.

  • Wyclef was nothing but a distraction.