Haiti Earthquake: Who’s given what?

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

The global response to the Haiti earthquake has been extraordinary and generous. But in the midst of all the reporting, it’s difficult to keep track of the numbers.

In particular, who has given what, who has dug deepest, and how the Haiti relief fund currently compares to those of other tragedies.

This is an image I created for The Guardian Datablog to visualise the international contributions to the Haiti Earthquake recovery effort as of 24th January 2010.

Haiti Earthquake: Who's Given What?
And the data is here for you to explore. (Thanks to Phil Wand and Jeffrey Grabell for the idea).

N.B. Reuters seem to have a whole different set of data on who paid what for the Tsunami. As they don’t list their sources, I can’t cross-reference with the OECD figures. Regardless, all the record keeping appears to dry up after 2005. But if anyone can find figures for after 2006, please email.

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Show Comments ( )

  • http://writingwithoutpaper.blogspot.com Maureen

    Very interesting to see the various figures. Have you thought also of creating a visual or visuals related to estimates of damage, including for example numbers of people left homeless, orphaned?

    I’m running a challenge on my blog today to benefit Vassar Haiti Project. I don’t know how many of this kind of activity are being done. Might make for another interesting visual if data could be captured. Lots on FB and Twitter, too.

  • Scott Reynen

    Why is the image labeled “Tsunami aid”? Wasn’t it an earthquake?

  • jo zelis

    In the Haiti aid chart it says that the Netherlands gathered 4.329.004 dollar. But I do believe it was around 83 million euro’s. Although I don’t know the exact amount and what it is in dollars but I do believe it isn’t 4million. Or is my interpretation of the chart totally wrong?

  • Meg

    How come the image says “tsunami aid pledged v. delivered”?

  • http://twitter.com/martinwaring Martin

    Interesting as always, small niggle though for the ‘Lest We Forget’ section surely the labels should be ‘delivered’ and ‘undelivered’, rather than ‘delivered’ and ‘pledged’ as the dark grey (or is it black? eyes tired) section doesn’t represent what was pledged and instead represents what was pledged and not delivered.

    On a quick glance one might think that the USA had delivered nine times what they pledged, obviously this isn’t the case and the values underneath clear this up but as a visual representation it’s perhaps a bit messy.

  • Brian

    Amount pledged would be another interesting dimension to add. You could make the pies larger or smaller in proportion to one another to show volume of money pledged/donated.

  • Brian

    Sorry, just clicked through to the whole set of charts; I was just looking at the “Lest We Forget” above…

  • Amber

    I am not able to see the names of the countries on the image, just a bunch of pie charts.

    I find it misleading that you put this in the context of “who has given what”. You’re talking about government pledges and funds here, it has nothing to do with how much money has come from which country – specifically ignoring donations by individuals.

  • Laurens

    According the most recent sources, The Netherlands have raised 100,6 million euro which according to the current rates that would be 140.44766 million U.S. dollars.

    Kinda of remarkable that such a small country is donating so much money.

  • Hadas

    I am from Israel.. really like what you did but kind of wonder how come Israel is not in your data analysis since we played a major role saving people in Haiti and it cost us a lot of money..

  • louise

    I wonder if the generosity factor has been effected by the “recession mentality” thats around at the moment, which is extreme in the UK (thanks to the incredibly miserable and relentless media!). Are the UK just more scrooge like anyway?
    Are the figures relative to the size of the country? As in the UK is tiny and has a much smaller population that some of the big countries like Canada etc? Although thinking about it, canada probably isn’t that densley populated!!
    Bloody UK can’t even do well at donating!! We are literally gold-medal-worthy just for being rubbish :P
    Everyone should keep on giving! And the americans need so stop stopping aid getting in, and stop occupying Haiti. Can’t help thinking all the money they’ve donated is a bit like an abusive partner, making Haiti feel like the owe the US, then making then dependant financially on the US and then the Americans can do what they like to Haiti. Everyone knows they’ve been trying to get back in there since the 30′s.

  • Brock

    “Why is the image labeled “Tsunami aid”? Wasn’t it an earthquake?”
    “How come the image says “tsunami aid pledged v. delivered”?”

    The broken line indicating the portion of the 2004 Tsunami relief is being overlooked because of the light contrast, and people are not ‘reading’ the graphic.

  • http://webcomicoverlook.com El Santo

    @ louise: “Everyone should keep on giving! And the americans need so stop stopping aid getting in, and stop occupying Haiti. Can’t help thinking all the money they’ve donated is a bit like an abusive partner, making Haiti feel like the owe the US, then making then dependant financially on the US and then the Americans can do what they like to Haiti. Everyone knows they’ve been trying to get back in there since the 30’s.”

    So you’re suggesting that Haiti should be denied the $168M in help? OK. You know, I donated to Haiti myself, but out of sympathy. My wife and I were discussing going down there this summer to help in rebuilding efforts. Saying that we can’t help because of a fear of imperialism… that is kind of selfish. Lord knows that all of South East Asia is now an American principality due to all the Tsunami aid our country delivered, right?

  • http://www.hd-trailers.net/ Krunk

    I had a question in regards to your chart.

    How is Most Giving People ($ donated per person) calculated? It’s unclear from your chart. I would’ve thought $ donated per person would be total $ donated divided by total # of people who donated. $0.53 looked rather impractical. I was curious if some people actually donated less than 2 quarters?

    Given that USA has donated $168mil and the total USA population is slightly over 308mil, $168/308 = $0.54/person even if you include ever single person in USA. It looks like that’s how your figure was calculated. I believe that chart is misleading.

  • http://www.hd-trailers.net/ Krunk

    Given what I said above, it’ll be interesting to see % of population that donated and/or the # of people who donated.

  • nodyx

    The problem is when rebuilding from catastrophes becomes profitable for some companies. Like the GS, Catterpillar, halliburton, etc. Some of these companies even have members that are on the direction board of the USA redcross.

  • Joris

    The Netherlands contributed about 83 million euros (115m US dollars) . Surprisingly they’re not in this chart.

  • Bastiaan

    I certainly agree with Joris. The Dutch collected over 80 million euro in one day with a special television and radio program. That is twice the amount America got with it’s special action despite of al the world famous celebs they ‘used’ in America. When I look at the source you uses the contribution of Holland is just 4 million dollar. Here is a official source which reports of an up-to-date status, which is over 100 million euro (+/- 140m US dollars) http://www.giro555.nl/nl-NL/Content.aspx?type=NewsItem&id=962 . In your stats that will make us the second most giving country with such a small amount of inhabitant.

    I hope you will change your stats if that is possible, because in the past it is also proven that the Dutch are the people who are the most giving.

  • BC

    “And the americans need so stop stopping aid getting in, and stop occupying Haiti. Can’t help thinking all the money they’ve donated is a bit like an abusive partner, making Haiti feel like the owe the US, then making then dependant financially on the US and then the Americans can do what they like to Haiti. Everyone knows they’ve been trying to get back in there since the 30’s.”
    Honestly, it’s stuff like this that makes Americans feel extremely comfortable in ignoring the opinions of foreigners. You might as well tell us that “The Jews want to take over Haiti” – it would have the same effect: revealing the fact that you’re woefully out of touch with reality as well as demonizing a group of people who don’t deserve it.

  • http://www.zoombits.de/speicherkarten/sd-hc cheap sd hc

    Hi all. It is devastating and I worried for Marcorel and his family. This event is also a moment to draw more people into the network of folks supporting Haiti . A thought is that we put out a call for contributions which frames this as a recognition of the immediate need as well as a recognition of the need for long-term infrastructure development such as sustainable sanitation and gardens. It is very likely that the coming weeks will see thousands of people leave Port au Prince for more rural areas making the increasing the need for toilets and food in these areas. The request could be something like an ask where 50% of contributions made to Youthaiti will be directed towards immediate relief efforts and 50% will be directed to toilets and gardens as need again turns to long-term development.

  • David Edwards

    Is the amount pledged to Haiti from countries actually the amount donated from the governments themselves? This does not include private donations from people in those countries? From the USA perspective, I think the $168M is an official governmental pledge, and is aside from the individual donations made from its citizens? These numbers might change dramatically if the private donations given to Haiti were “nationalized”…

  • http://www.moinid.com Design ideas

    Awesome visualization. Very informative and simple

  • Andrew K

    You have to keep in mind that this chart represents government donations and not donations by private citizens. For instance, after hurricane Katrina, private U.S. citizens donated almost $7 billion, and almost $2 billion after the Indian Ocean tsunami. All of the latest reports show that the US is on track to donate even more than that to Haiti.

  • http://www.wedgeim.com Calgary web design

    what is with all the dutch on this site? The remarkable thing here is Canada a country of 30Million people gave 131 Million dollars that’s 4.3 dollars for every man women and child.

  • omdesign


  • Statisics?

    Very interesting but a bit disturbing that the size of the yellow dots does not correspond to the values they represent (at least in the “Most Cash/Giving/Generous” section, where rank 2 dot area is approx 1/4 of rank1 dot area). Leads to believe that US gives 4 times the amount of cash that Canada does, when in fact it is 168m vs 131m. Better to skip the dots in this section. But in the “International contributions” section, they seem to match. And the piecharts are also easy to understand.

    But as I said, very interesting.

  • lowkey

    the circle areas need to be made relative to the data they are portraying. currently the leading country in each category appears to have given multiple times more than the second ranked country.

  • Impressed American

    Canada went above and beyond what would normaly have been expected. I would have loved to see Canada raise more then the US but in a way they did.

  • Melissa

    I don’t think your comparison between U.S. and Canada is accurate (under “most cash”). The numbers may be, but visually it may not be. I put those numbers into Illustrator and the Canada circle was much larger in comparison with the U.S. Just an FYI.

  • Marcos

    Apart from the 6000 soldiers, Brazil gave R$ 300 MM or US$ 160 MM, ten times what is in the graph ? !!!

  • ohms

    40% of US aid to Haiti http://bit.ly/aTnuxs
    is funding the military kidnapping of the country http://bit.ly/9snN58

  • Jenny

    People – it says “Tsunami aid” on the last data-set because it’s using the pledge/delivered ratio of aid for the Asian Tsnumani as an example of how we might expect pledges for Haiti to be realised (data for which is obviously not available yet).

    Agree the blobs absolutely need to be the correct areas for the data or it’s hugely misleading and undermines the whole (very interesting) piece.

  • Hywel Thomas

    Now divide the total amount given against the number of deaths per incident and see how much more an American death is worth than a Haitian. Humbling stats.

  • Bastiaan

    @Calgary web design
    How remarkable is it then that the Dutchman alone (not the government) gave $100 Million dollar with just 17 Million inhabitants, that makes $5.88 a person. I don’t care that the Netherlands are low in this chart, I just want to state that the Dutch are very generous, as where most of the Dutch people are mentioned as penny-pinching.

  • http://www.thepowerrank.com/ Ed Feng

    I also had a question about the size of the circles. Is the area proportional to the number? It does not seem like it for the largest two circles in the figure at the top. Or maybe this is a weird visual effect? Thanks.

  • http://www.r4-ds.es/ acekard 2i

    Haiti need help and who is help and who is not is not matter!I think we all have to gather done some thing for Haiti sure.We cant back up as it is the same before but…Don’t stop help!

  • Barbara

    This is incredible, thank you!

  • Mike

    I’d like to see a comparison to what kind of aid Haiti got before the earthquake. Haiti needs help, yes, but they needed help for a long time. And there are many other countries that need help too – do we only care about the ones that celebrities care about?

    And I’ve been giving $40 a month to Doctors Without Borders for years. Does that count? And that’s just me – does it matter what country I come from?

    Interesting stats, none the less.

  • http://medicalia.org Carlos Vázquez

    I feel proud of Spain and Spanish!

  • Laurie Mitchell

    Great graph!

    FYI, the earthquake in Haiti was 2010 not 2009 like it states under the International Total section. Unless Haiti suffered a previous earthquake I was not aware of…

  • MatTrue

    Uhhh, I think you need to update your charts. The U.S. has given way more than that.


    As of March 2, in USD:

    Private (individuals & organisations) 822,257,928

    United States 685,631,876

    Canada 81,331,088

    Allocation of funds from Red Cross / Red Crescent 76,780,196

    Saudi Arabia 50,000,000

    Allocations of unearmarked funds by UN agencies 39,675,076

    France 35,746,117

    Spain 34,516,159

    United Kingdom 33,007,214

    European Commission (ECHO) 26,353,261

    Japan 25,327,154

    Norway 25,230,493

    Sweden 22,448,322


    Using data less than two weeks after an event to say something meaningful is pointless.

  • Venezuelan

    I really like the concept behind of the power of visualizing data to “beautify” if. The thing is that here applies the GIGO concept: Garbage In – Garbage Out.

    The monopoly of “generosity” is a highly politized idea which sometimes serves as a conscience reliever and self-gratifier, and sometimes as proof to defend moral high-grounds.

    The source of your data data, for example, didn’t even mention Venezuela’s aid to Haiti, a poor country compared to the standards of Canada, the Netherlands and the US and yet, by the date this post was published, one that had already forgiven 295 MM USD debt with Petrocaribe:

    You would have to add to that millions of USD in additional help though Unasur, hundreds of tons of food, relief workers on the ground, etc. But hey… what would that say about the character of a “banana republic”, its people and its “strong-man” leader.

  • http://stubbornfacts.us PatHMV

    As others have noted, the country-by-country figures show only the government-provided aid. It does NOT include aid given privately by individuals and groups from each country. It is exceedingly misleading to label this “most giving” countries, because it does not reflect the total amount of aid being given by all the people of that country… only the aid that flows through their central government first.

  • http://www.calgary-webdesign.com/ Calgary web design

    Happy to see that Canada was in the top leagues here — and at $3.89 the highest per person amount to boot! Great way of visualizing the data, thanks!

  • Calgary Web Design

    Well the country is represented by its government. If the government is generous, then we can consider that people are generous as well.

    It’s a leader and follower principle.

    If the leaders can’t give much, guess what will be the level of the generosity of its followers…


    Jamaica was the first country to respond both in cash and kind…where is this data and the comparitor regarding giving and population size???

  • http://www.fimedia.ca/ Calgary web design

    Interesting how canada may trail the US in terms of most cash, but then suddenly drop so badly when it comes to $ donated per person. Either way, way to go Canada!

  • Tapan Jain

    Amazing Stuff man!….I love the way you make sense out of the data. Great visualizations!

  • Pierre Louis


    Your work is awesome, thank you very much for all this inspirational stuff.
    I was thinking that it would be interesting to update this data with the flooding in Pakistan, to show how small the amount of international support is.

    PL from Paris, France.

  • DUDE

    awesome charts