The floods in Pakistan are being described as a slow Tsunami, sweeping across the length of the country, raising further fears of epidemics. It is a heart wrenching situation, but is only the taste of things to come, as this article puts it. Everyone who can is helping out, in whatever way possible. From a distance, one of the best possible ways of contributing is by donating money, as global health expert Alana Shaikh has said before.
Senior TED Fellow, Faisal Chohan has built pakreport.org as a platform for reporting and mapping incidents, directing relief to areas that need it most. As the TED Fellows blog describes it: "With over 20 million people affected by the floods, Faisal’s pakreport.org is expected to be the biggest usage yet of the crowdsourcing tool Ushahidi. The platform collects eyewitness accounts of flood-related incidents via SMS, email and the web. It then verifies them for accuracy and plots the data points on a map, providing up-to-date information to aid workers — an invaluable service when conventional media outlets and communication lines are down." To contribute to accurate mapping of the crisis, people can text their eyewitness accounts of the flood to 3441 with the location of the incident. The message should begin “FL,” followed by a space and then the observation. There is a lot of confusion about which is the right charity, and whom to donate. Here are a few recommended ones: UNICEF, DEC, THE BIG GIVE and OXFAM.