I'm making an "executive decision" and moving this thread to the "General" forum for now due to the gravity of the situation.
I think the best way people can help out right now is to donate cash to a charity organization that helps out with disaster relief. I believe many, if not most, are currently directing most of their attention to the disaster-stricken area. Although I'm sure many of us would like to gather up clothing, blankets, and medical supplies, there is a lot of advice (such as this article
) that suggests that cash sent to disaster relief agencies with professionals who can best route the help would be more beneficial.
Here are some lists of organizations helping out with the disaster relief:
Also, in an effort to try to mobilize the AikiWeb community in helping out with disaster relief, I went and put up a page to collect donations from the AikiWeb community here:
Please read everything on this above page before donating, though. Donating directly to organizations may be more cost effective.
In any case, although I can certainly think of many ways to spend the money myself, AikiWeb is going to donate $500 to the American Red Cross to help with the disaster relief.
Please help in any way that you can. Don't forget that even if you can not offer monetary donations, organizations such as the American Red Cross
can use volunteers, even at their local location.
My thoughts go out to everyone affected by this disaster.