Japan Disaster Relief As the news of earthquake and tsunami damage, nuclear meltdowns, and evacuations of swaths of Japan continue to be unsettling, I am compelled to try to help in some way. I thought about donating an Expedition water filter, but I’m not really sure how to go about that. I realize that cash donations to disaster relief organizations are the best way to help those in dire need. But how do I decide which charity will use the money for the most good? I decided to do a Google search and found the website Charity Navigator. They have a multi-point formula where they rate organizations on how they use their funds and they give percentages of how much goes into administration, how much comes from fundraising, the amount that goes to Directors’ salaries, etc. They give the charities efficiency ratings and based on a set of logarithms they come up with an overall star rating system. It all looked good to me, but how was I really to know if the Charity Navigator was legit? Well, I Googled them to find out. Sure enough, I found a website that criticized their rating system. Then I thought, well, what if the folks at this blogsite are biased? I then thought about googling them to see if I could find an axe they were grinding, but I realized this type of cyber investigation could be endless. I decided to trust in the Charity Navigator since they explain how their rating system works and I found it very helpful for choosing what group to give my money to. I donated to Doctors Without Borders after the Haiti Earthquake and was happy to see that they rated high. I also liked the looks of the group Americares. So I sent them both donations. As a new start-up online business, I am committed to providing a service to those who may be traveling overseas to help victims of disasters and I have pledged at least 10% percent of my profits to charity. But for the immediate needs of those in Japan, I am going to go even farther. From now until the end of March, for every purchase you make at HighwaterFilters.com, I will donate 10% of the proceeds from your total order to a group aiding earthquake survivors. If you have a specific charity that you support and want to give a recommendation, I will be happy to consider. Thanks for your business and for helping those in need!

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