World Vision begins relief efforts in Haiti; Canadians contribute through
social media campaign

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Jan. 14 /CNW/ - World Vision is on the ground in the Haitian city of Port-au-Prince, ravaged by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake Tuesday afternoon.

With an international response team flying in from around the globe to assist, World Vision's relief efforts are underway. World Vision Haiti is now distributing supplies focusing on helping families and children with basic needs.

"We are ready to help," said World Vision Canada President and CEO, Dave Toycen. Toycen is en route and will arrive in the Haitian capital Thursday morning. "The terrible situation in Port-au-Prince has affected one in three Haitians, many of them children, who are the most vulnerable in disasters like this."

"This earthquake reminds us that we are all connected and that the children of Haiti are our children as well. We need to do what we can to help them."

Canadians have stepped in to provide financial support to World Vision Canada, this time enlisting the emerging social media to their cause.

A campaign has begun on Facebook and Twitter, challenging members of those networks to donate $10 to World Vision Canada for relief efforts in Haiti by going to and then inviting their friends list or followers to do the same. This has resulted in a dramatic increase of online giving to - almost 10 times the usual traffic.

"Social media has provided us with wonderful new opportunities to mobilize and contribute," noted Dave Toycen. "I encourage everyone to donate, to tweet or post about it, and encourage others to do the same."

World Vision's goal is to raise $5 million as quickly as possible to help children and families in Haiti to help as many of the 3 million people who have been affected by this disaster. Those wishing to contribute can visit or call 1-800-268-5528.

    -   World Vision donors support more than 52,000 children in Haiti,
        including more than 10,800 children sponsored by Canadians.
    -   World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy
        organization dedicated to working with children, families and
        communities to overcome poverty and injustice. World Vision serves
        all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender.

SOURCE World Vision Canada

For further information: For further information: To interview World Vision staff or for more information, please contact: Yoko Kobayashi, (905) 565-6200 ext. 2151, (416) 671-0086 (cell),; Britt Hamilton, (905) 565-6200 ext. 3973, (416) 419-1321 (cell),

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