The huge earthquake in Nepal has caused a lot of damage and suffering. Thousands of people are hurt and homeless. If you want to help the Nepalese, Charity Navigator has a list of screened charities that you can give to.
A lot of people also want to help the animals in Nepal, whether personal pets, street dogs, or others. That’s fine, too. But be wary of the profiteering Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and its international arm, Humane Society International, which are allegedly en route to help out.
In our report “Looting in the Aftermath,” released last fall, we detail several incidents in which HSUS profiteered off of high-profile events. After Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey and New York, HSUS raised over $2 million—yet according to documents it filed with the NY attorney general, HSUS only spent one-third of that money on Sandy relief. HSUS also raised money after the 2010 Haiti earthquake because “Haiti’s animal survivors desperately need care”—despite admitting elsewhere that “no animal issues are here that are related to the event of the earthquake.” (The aforementioned Charity Navigator has issued a “Donor Advisory” against HSUS, by the way.)
You may see slick ads with heart-wrenching pictures from Humane Society International. But if you give to them, your money may not go to help out in Nepal at all.
So who can you give to? Consider giving to local groups. Animal Welfare Network Nepal and Animal Nepal are two such groups. We can’t vouch for them ourselves, but at least your money will be in the country. But you also may want to wait for a few days while a chaotic situation gets more in order. Then there will be a better idea of how best to help.