Companies pledge aid as death toll rises

Apple is the most prominent company I’ve seen so far in its open and very public support for the earthquake/tsunamis disaster in Asia last Sunday.

As the screenshot above shows, the company has given over its corporate website home page to stating its commitment and support for victims plus links to sites you can go to and make a donation.

This is a fantastic gesture. But Apple is not alone:

  • Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged $3 million and has raised more than $3.5 million in online donations to aid South Asian countries (info via Bink)
  • Many independent software companies are donating sales revenue to disaster relief – Nick Bradbury (FeedDemon and TopStyle), and Dmitry Chestnykh (BlogJet), to name just two developers
  • Microsoft employees in India are donating a day’s pay to relief efforts, and employees in many other countries are supporting local aid organizations (info via Scoble)

No doubt there are many more companies* doing similar things. This is all great news.

Now comes the very bad news.

According to a Reuters report a few hours ago, the death toll from last Sunday’s earthquake/tsunamis disaster has now passed 120,000. Millions are homeless. And it’s looking increasingly likely that the majority of missing European tourists in Thailand I blogged about earlier today are dead, as they probably are elsewhere in the region.

Visit the BBC News Asia Quake Disaster pages for the latest news and information.

*Additional info: Excellent report on CNN Money this evening with details on around 40 US companies and their great contributions to relief efforts.

CNN Money | Corporations give to tsunami relief