Monday, March 01, 2010

Earthquake in Chile

This photo, posted on the Facebook page of my friend Max Mills, shows the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami that hit the town of Curanipe, Chile. The small fishing village was at the epicenter of the magnitude 8.8 quake.

In January 2006, I visited Curanipe and stayed with Max at his home just south of town.

For additional photos of the devastation in this and other Chilean communities, see's "The Big Picture".

Donate to Relief Efforts

Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T, and Verizon are all waiving fees and charges for users who want to reach out to victims of the massive earthquake that hit Chile last week. The extremely successful text-to-donate campaign during the Haiti disaster has is also back in full swing.

The Red Cross made huge waves with its text-to-donate initiative after the massive earthquake in Haiti. By sending a text message to a special Red Cross number, users could send a $10 donation, which was simply tacked on their monthly phone bill. More than $25 million was raised from text donations.

Chile now faces its own devastation after a magnitude-8.8 quake ripped through the country last week. The death toll currently stands at 711, while over a million homes have been destroyed. To do their part in helping with relief efforts, mobile phone companies have made it easier to provide aid.

Sprint, AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile have all announced that they will waive the standard texting charge for any text message donation. Verizon and T-Mobile have both gone a step further, eliminating all charges for calls between the US and Chile.

"We want to help alleviate some of the agony being experienced by our customers trying to reach loved ones in Chile," said Verizon VP Susan Retta. "Waiving the calling charges will help our customers focus on tracking down and keeping in touch with their family and friends without having to also worry about the cost of the call."

Users can send texts to the following numbers to donate to Chile earthquake relief efforts:

- Text "Chile" to 90999 to send $10 to the American Red Cross
- Text "Chile" to 52000 to send $10 to the Salvation Army
- Text "Chile" to 25383 to send $10 to Habitat For Humanity
- Text "Chile" to 20222 to send $10 to Wold Vision
- Text "Rebuild" to 50555 to send $10 to Operation USA
- Text "Youth" to 20222 to send $10 to UNICEF

Max also suggests contacting:

Cruz Roja Chilena (Red Cross Chile)

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