Very appropriately put accross. The devastation is colossal. The
toll as of now reported stands at 11000 people killed and untold
misseries inflicted on hundreds of thousands more. My heartfelt
sympathies and condolences to the breaved
It is only when mother nature crosses its boundaries, that we see
We cannot play with mother nature without its wrath or correction
that she must do for our wrongs.
Hearing of the earthquake and tsunami affecting Thailand, Sri Lanka,
and the surrounding countries, my heart aches for all the poor souls
whose lives have been devastated by this catastrophe.
I am surprised and heartened to see Orchid posts arriving, and hope
that Hanuman, Ahmed Shareek, and all the other Orchid members living
in those countries have survived the devastation, and are well and
The tidal wave affected the eastern cost of Thailand, I am well.
Bangkok was not affected. best wishes and thanks for caring.
I was so pleased to see Hanuman’s note attached to Janet’s post - I
pray the other Orchid members are similarly unaffected. I worry most
about Ahmed Shareek (only because I know him best) who lives in
Colombo, Sri Lanka.
As with other Orchid members my heart aches for all the people
living in the areas surrounding the Indian Ocean.
Natural disasters, totally unanticipated, are so brutal and
indiscriminate in the losses they cause. I only wish there were
some way to help other than to donate to the local relief agencies
such as the Red Cross, etc.
I am so relieved to hear tha Hanuman is safe, and I hope that
other members of our Orchid family are also safe… My heart goes out
to all the people who are suffering such a loss, and now have to cope
with the results of this terrible disaster.
I have heard from Ahmed, he and family are ok, his father in law
lost his business but is safe. Ahmed is setting up a pay pal account
to buy supplies for the needy. Please check with him directly. I
will contribute that way.
We forget that we are pretty puny creatures next to the awesome
power of Mother Nature. We need to respect her a lot more - and
stop filling dangeous areas full of vulnerable people. This morning
I heard that fully a third of the victims were children, many of
whom had rushed out to collect seashells when the waters drew back
prior to slamming the waves over the landscape. The seashells may
have been their main source of support, when sold to tourists.
Those poor babies!
My heart goes out to those tens of thousands who have experienced
the tsunami. Most of us have no idea what such a disaster is like.
I wonder if we all understand the impact this will have on our
business. You can certainly expect the price of gems from the area
(and there are many) to increase as the supply decreases. Frankly, I
kind of hope that will happen (and know it will) as it will improve
the lives of those who are still working in the business of mining
and cutting gems from the region. My heart goes out also to those who
will be unemployed as a result of this disaster.
Life is so full of “ups and downs” it’s something we should all take
as a “given.” However, while we still enjoy the profits from low
cost gems purchased in the past, I hope we will all make a
contribution to the charities involved in the rescue of the remaining
people out of that profit. I plan to do so.
All the hand ringing is very touching on this subject. Let’s do
something that will make a REAL difference. How about a relief
fund,initiated from our community to help those who have been so
adversely affected by this act of nature. Any suggestions?
As sincere and well-intentioned as I’m sure everyone’s concern and
prayers for the Asian tsunami victims are, what the survivors
desperately need now is our tangible help, not our warm wishes.
Like most of you, I, too, wondered how I could help from so far
away. For good reason I am wary of giving money to ANY goverment
agency and even many large charities. However, there are several
financially-responsible charitable groups who are, at this very
moment, working to help those in need in Thailand, India, Sri Lanka
and elsewhere, and they could use our financial support.
A few haritable non-profit organizations worth considering are:
Doctors Without Borders, Food For The Poor, Northwest Medical Teams,
and World Vision. All of these groups are sending medicine, doctors
and nurses, and/or food and supplies. If you want to research how
charities spend the money you send them, you might want to check out www.ministrywatchers.com, or simply do a Google search “charity
ratings”. Additionally, perhaps Orchid members who live in the
affected countries can give us suggestions regarding how we can best
send financial help to local groups, etc.?
For those of you have had a financially prosperous year, you have
just a few more days to plan your end of year charitable giving.
Donating money is a great way to reduce your taxes, and it makes you
feel good, too!
Many of us may be donating already through other channels. I know I
am. But a group effort never hurts. There is a challenge thread
going on the eBay Bidding Board to get people donating. There are many
many excellent organizations that are bringing relief to the areas
and people affected.
I agree we should do something concrete aside from expressing our
feelings. Ahmed Shareek has set up a pay-pal account through his web
site at http://www.crescentgems.com. I found it when I went to the
site at the suggestion of Randy Smith. I have also received this
from several friends:
If you have not yet gone to your favorite relief agency's site
to donate to the millions of survivors of the earthquake and
tsunami in southern Asia (current count is 56,000 dead), please
consider visiting the following sites:
Reuters Foundation's site, Alertnet.org: Alerting
humanitarians to emergencies. A treasuretrove of information
and links to non-governmental organizations.
Among my favorite all-around NGOs are the International
Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, IFRC
www.ifrc.org (they often can go where IRC workers may not feel
safe,. . . .
Students, faculty and staff have expressed an interest in
supporting relief efforts for survivors of the tsunami. The
following CNN website carries a fairly complete listing of
international aid organizations. You may find them helpful.
I found a page on MSNBC.com that lists the names and contact
for reputable charitable organizations involved with
For my fellow Floridians who wish to help, there is a phone number
you can call to find out if the organization you are considering to
donate to is reputable. To check to see if the charity is registered
with the state of Florida, call 1-800-HELP-FLA or visiting www.800helpfla.com/giftgiversguide Con artists always creep up
during times like these (Florida is still experiencing “hurricane
cons”). If you live here, try calling this number before donating to
any charitable organization.
Just knowing that 100,000 people are predicted dead from this event
of plate tectonics is sobering, to say the least. If that doesn’t
drive home the significance of this geological event, I direct you
to this Reuters news excerpt:
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The deadly Asian earthquake may have
permanently accelerated the Earth’s rotation – shortening days by a
fraction of a second – and caused the planet to wobble on its axis,
U.S. scientists said on Tuesday.
Richard Gross, a geophysicist with NASA (news - web sites)'s Jet
Propulsion Laboratory in California, theorized that a shift of mass
toward the Earth’s center during the quake on Sunday caused the
planet to spin 3 microseconds, or one millionth of a second, faster
and to tilt about an inch (2.5 cm) on its axis.
It seems that scientists will be adding another “leap second” a bit
sooner than previously anticipated.
The following links are from the on-line publication Heroic Stories.
The owner, Randy Cassingham, is a Red Cross volunteer and paramedic
and always does his research. So I trust that these are trustworthy
places to donate.
I would also like to add that the tangible relief efforts take many
forms. There obvious needs such as food & blankets that are
critical, but hygiene needs are the ones that will save the most
lives in the longer term, until government aid can step in with the
big bucks to rebuild water purification plants and such. Hygiene
assistance addresses water purification, cleaning agents,
disinfectants, etc., which can begin to prevent the epidemic of
plague illnesses that will follow devastation of this magnitude
(cholera, dengue fever, etc.)
One organization that focuses on “hygiene kits” for disaster areas
is Mercy Corps. They have been highly rated and their work is worth
considering as you determine how to provide support for relief
efforts. You can find out about them at http://www.mercycorps.org
Following are some of the agencies accepting contributions for aid to
people affected by the earthquake and tsunami in Asia. Click on the
links below to donate to an individual organization or go to Network
for Good to donate to multiple organizations.
ACTION AGAINST HUNGER
247 West 37th Street, Suite 1201
New York, N.Y. 10018
AMERICAN JEWISH WORLD SERVICE
45 West 36th Street, 10th Floor
New York, N.Y. 10018
AMERICAN JEWISH JOINT
South Asia Tsunami Relief
847A Second Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10017
AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE
AFSC Crisis Fund
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, Pa. 19102
AMERICAN RED CROSS
International Response Fund
P.O. Box 37243
Washington, D.C. 20013
151 Ellis Street
Atlanta, GA 30303
P.O. Box 17090
Baltimore, Md. 21203-7090
DIRECT RELIEF INTERNATIONAL
27 South La Patera Lane
Santa Barbara, Calif. 93117
DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS
P.O. Box 1856
Merrifield, Va. 22116-8056
EPISCOPAL RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT
P. O. Box 12043
Newark, NJ 07101
American Council for Voluntary International Action
1717 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 701
Washington, DC 20036
INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF RED CROSS/RED CRESCENT
INTERNATIONAL MEDICAL CORPS
1919 Santa Monica Boulevard, Suite 300
Santa Monica, Calif. 90404
INTERNATIONAL ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN CHARITIES
Asia Disaster Response
P.O. Box 630225
Baltimore, MD 21263-0225
INTERNATIONAL RESCUE COMMITTEE
P.O. Box 5058
877-REFUGEE or 733-8433
ISLAMIC RELIEF USA
Southeast Asia Earthquake Emergency
P.O. Box 6098
Burbank, Calif. 91510
LUTHERAN WORLD RELIEF
700 Light Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21230
Southeast Asia Earthquake Response
P.O. Box 2669
Portland, Ore. 97208
NETWORK FOR GOOD
8320 Melrose Avenue, Suite 200
Los Angles, Calif. 90069
Donor Services Department
26 West Street
Boston, MA 12111-1206
SAVE THE CHILDREN
Asia Earthquake/Tidal Wave Relief Fund
54 Wilton Road
Westport, Conn. 06880
General Emergency Fund
333 E. 38th Street
New York, NY 10016
WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME
US Friends of the WFP
PO Box 11856
Washington, D.C. 20008
I think sympathy is like saying you’re sorry, it is better to do
something rather than saying “sorry”. CNN has lists of organizations
one can give to…there should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that the
region needs money to survive. The only way the people will survive
is to have water, food and meds. I think everyone can make a
philosophical statement about good and/or bad about anything…but
when there is such a huge disaster, this hardly seems the time to me
to vent ones opinions. We (jewelry people) all buy, use and/or abuse
the talents and resources of this particular area of the world so it
is really just give back time.