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How Do I Volunteer to Help the Philippines After Haiyan?

A mother carries her daughter as they walk in Tacloban, which was severely damaged by Typhoon Haiyan.

© UNICEF Philippines/2013/JMaitem. A mother carries her daughter as they walk in Tacloban, which was severely damaged by Typhoon Haiyan.

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Rachael Swanson Mizuno is Director of Volunteer and Community Partnerships at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.

After an emergency, we typically see an influx of people wanting to join UNICEF and put their muscle where their money has already gone. I’m always so proud that our work organizing volunteers stands in support of staff like Marissa Aroy and that you can always find volunteer stories of compassion and giving in times of emergency.

Here are a few ways you can help UNICEF today as we collectively respond to the tremendous need in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan:

1. Donate to UNICEF’s relief and rebuilding efforts. Support UNICEF’s work in the Philippines: $10, $20, $50 or any amount you can give will help children in the Philippines rebuild their lives.

2. Talk to the children in your lives about the disaster. Start a conversation about what they have heard and seen about the emergency. Help them feel personally safe and encourage them to take constructive action in response to the relief and recovery efforts, if they feel inclined.

3. Mobilize a school or community response. Brainstorm ways that you can mobilize your networks to raise funds and awareness for the Philippines. Be sure your efforts are a rich learning experience and appropriate for UNICEF.

4. Host a fundraiser utilizing our online tools. Register your event on our map of activities around the country and create an online fundraising page today.

5. Register as a UNICEF Volunteer. The UNICEF Action Center is a plethora of ideas and resources.

UNICEF Action Center

6. Keep us posted! Send us your photos, ideas, and actions on the UNICEF Action Center or the UNICEF USA Facebook page. We’ll be looking out for them!

Lastly, I just want to thank all of the thousands of volunteers around the country who have responded thus far. We can’t thank you enough for your creativity, ingenuity and perseverance. Let’s get to work!


  1. Tara
    Posted November 14, 2013 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the tips Rachael!

    • Rachael
      Posted November 15, 2013 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      You are most welcome, Tara. I hope they are useful to you; we need all the help we can get!

  2. Francisco Mercado
    Posted November 15, 2013 at 12:54 am | Permalink

    I am a physician based on Honolulu and would like to be part of your medical missions to the Yolanda-stricken areas in Visayas.

    • Roxanne Makoff
      Posted November 15, 2013 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

      Thanks, Francisco. Unfortunately, we are unable to place volunteers from the U.S. overseas as part of UNICEF’s programs. The most effective way to help those directly affected by Typhoon Haiyan is to learn more and make a donation by visiting http://www.unicefusa.org/philippines. If you are interested in creating an online fundraising page to secure additional donations from your friends and family, please visit http://www.crowdrise.com/unicefphilippines. All proceeds from fundraising will go directly to the relief effort. We appreciate your support during this difficult time. Best wishes.

  3. Robert Hatcher
    Posted November 17, 2013 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    I just donated $500. to UnicefUSA for help in the Phillipines. Please give me some assurance that my donation will go to the Phillipine relief effort and not to the salaries of the Unicef Administration Staff. The Ad. Staff is necessary and they deserve compensation, but please make an exception in this case.

      Posted November 19, 2013 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      Hi Robert, thanks for the question. Please see the FAQ here. The U.S. Fund for UNICEF will retain 3% to cover processing fees — but only of donations made via credit card.

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