Category Archives: Disasters

New actions on Facebook…

The floods cover an area greater than that of England.

Hello badgers,

Attention Superbadger users, I have a flurry of action for you, over at http://apps.facebook.com/superbadger.

We saw a great campaign victory earlier this year when Haiti received debt cancellation to help rebuild after the earthquake. The same principle should apply to Pakistan now. We’ve all seen the devastating floods in Pakistan. We’ve given generously and that money is helping.

But at the same time, Pakistan’s government is sending $8 million every day out of the country again in debt repayments.

If the UK and other rich countries stopped taking the money, it could help a lot of people who’ve lost everything rebuild their lives. We badgered them to do this for Haiti, and they did. It’s time to ask again.

You can take action over on Facebook by clicking, http://apps.facebook.com/superbadger.

Thank you for all you do and enjoy the week – oh and a little heads up that I’m sending a crack squad out to the Millennium Development Goal summit in a few days time.  They will be keeping me updated from the UN and we’ll be posting their reports here as well.

Superbadger signing off…

Haiti’s Debt is a WIPEOUT!

Big news badgers!

You may remember back in January when Superbadger and team were lobbying the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other organisations to ‘Tear up the IOU’ for Haiti and cancel the $1.25 billion debt the country then owed. Since then, every single creditor has cancelled these debts. All except the IMF.

A recent Superbadger action called for the IMF UK director Alex Gibbs to do the right thing and announce the cancellation of any remaining debt the country owed, a figure over $250 million, which would make a huge difference to a country still recovering and rebuilding after such a devastating disaster.  Over 370 Superbadger users sent Mr Gibbs an email.

Et voila! Mr Gibbs didn’t let us down!

On July 21st, the IMF announced the cancellation of ALL of Haiti’s debt to it.

This is great news for Haiti! It comes just after the six-month anniversary of the earthquake in January that ripped through the capital and destroyed so many homes and lives.

Massive thanks to the IMF for doing the right thing and thanks to the 370+ badgerers who took action!

Find out about what Tearfund is doing to help Haiti, and how you can make an impact, by going to http://www.tearfund.org/News/Haiti+earthquake/

Check back at Superbadger’s Facebook application http://apps.facebook.com/superbadger for more future success stories!

Credit to the debtors

There’s been so much going on in recent weeks and months that it’s easy to forget that over the last 5 months, Haiti has been trying to rebuild.

But SuperBadger was delighted to hear recently that more of Haiti’s debts have been cancelled! Both the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the World Bank have cancelled large chunks of debt owed to them by Haiti and made further funding available as grants, rather than loans, to aid the recovery.

Photo: Richard Hanson/Tearfund

On 22 March, the IADB cancelled debts of $441 million owed to by Haiti. The IADB is the largest source of development financing in Latin America, and was the largest creditor to Haiti. This cancellation will clearly make a huge impact on Haiti’s ability to recover in the coming years. On top of this, the IADB have also pledged over $2 billion in grants to Haiti over the next decade!

A week later, the international community came together at the donor’s conference and pledged $5.3 billion to fund the initial phase of Haiti’s reconstruction over the next 18 months. As part of this, the World Bank cancelled Haiti’s remaining debt of $39 million.  

SuperBadger hopes these will be precedents for highly indebted countries hit by disasters in future – many of them are prone to disasters, so this is a situation that’s highly likely to happen again.

All of this is fantastic news, and SuperBadger is hopeful that Haiti’s other creditors will  follow the lead of the IADB and World Bank, to ensure that the country’s recovery and reconstruction isn’t hampered by crippling debt repayments. You might remember that back in January, in the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, we badgered the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to Tear Up the IOU and release Haiti from their crippling debts of $890 million, as well as also urging the UK government to cancel all outstanding debts. The IMF has agreed to cancel these debts, but we still haven’t heard the details of the deal. As soon as details are released, SuperBadger will let you all know. Hopefully it will be more good news!

Tear up the IOU!

 Superbadger was deeply saddened that his first post of 2010 centres around such a horrific disaster, but action must be taken to help the people of Haiti as much as we possibly can.

Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti last week, leaving thousands dead or missing, the situation is still desperate.

As a response to the catastrophe, SuperBadger launched an action urging the Chancellor to do everything he could to get the IMF to cancel Haiti’s debt.

Now we have another opportunity to support the people of Haiti, and call on the IMF to release the country from their crippling debts of $890 million.

Leaders are meeting in Montreal on Monday to decide on the amount of aid that they will give. The international community and the IMF must take action to cancel Haiti’s debt immediately, and work to turn the $100 million loan already announced into a grant.

Please badger Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the IMF, to ask that when leaders meet on Monday, they also cancel Haiti’s IMF debts immediately.

Haiti should not be worrying about debt as families are still digging through rubble. As they face this major disaster, let’s urge IMF to cancel their unfair debt, quickly. The world is standing shoulder to shoulder with Haiti – will the IMF help or hinder?

Badger the IMF to tear up the IOU and cancel the debts!

Find out how Superbadger’s friends are working in Haiti at www.tearfund.org.

To see how else you can help, go to www.tearfund.org/haiti

To help fund disaster relief efforts, please go to www.dec.org.uk. Your money will help provide shelter, food and water for the survivors of the earthquake, and help rescue teams save many more.