Canada ups pledge to $400 million

UPDATE 1:

The CBC now reports that the government has officially announced $425 million over 5 years.

What’s more, personal donations from Canadians has reached $100 million including the largest single personal donation every made, $5 million, to the Canadian Red Cross coming from “Music World’ music store millionaires Kroum and Evan Pindoff.

Correction
I originally said that in total, $600 million dollars will be coming from Canada in Private and Public aid… that is not accurate as I’ve since learned that about $150 million of the Governments $425 million package will go towards matching private donations to Canadian charities (which ends today). Also, $265 million of that $425 million is earmarked for “immediate” aid. Which is very important. So that leaves about $10-50 million to go towards long term aid depending on how much the private match works out to be.

But still, if you ask me, $525 million in private and public aid from Canada is pretty darn good for a country of 30 million!

Well Done Canada!!

Canada is raising its’ aid to $400 million over five years. The CBC is reporting that the majority will go towards helping Sri Lanka… which is also where the DART has been deployed.

This is similar to the US contribution of $427 million (CAD) though I doubt that includes the expense of the US military operations ongoing in the relief effort. Many would say that those operations are priceless.

The DART arrived at its’ destination in Ampara, Sri Lanka today and will setup quickly… it also sounds as if aid is finally starting to reach those who are in the most desperate of need in Aceh province in Indonesia.

It’s nice to see the World coming together and really making a difference. What pains me though, is that as things start to stabilize in these countries, the mass media will quickly lose interest and these people, who went from having real lives and futures to having NOTHING… will lose the attention of the world. I have faith that NGOs and other aid agencies will not lose sight of their goals… but we must all remind ourselves that this is a huge, long term commitment and it will take years if not decades for some of these places to recover completely.

The BBC had an article on their website about Krakatoa (sp?) and it’s explosion in the late 1800s.. it’s off their front page now. But it talks of 40 metre waves, an explosion that could be heard 6000 miles away (that’s like someone in Baltimore or Halifax hearing a bang from London)… and a tsunami that was felt in France. It took decades for areas to recover… but there was no such thing as huge NGOs back then. Hopefully we can do better.

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