Wyclef Jean raises over $2 million for Haiti: How you can help

Former Fugee and native Haitian Wyclef Jean has been hard at work since the 7.0 earthquake that rocked Port au Prince on Tuesday, using his Yele Haiti Foundation to raise money for his homeland, and traveling to the area to view the devastation first-hand. (Fox News called him “Haiti’s version of Bono, Haiti’s version of Bruce Springsteen.”) According to MTV News, he’s brought in over $2 million so far, much of it through a text-message donation system similar to the one the Red Cross has used to raise $8 million. (Major cell carriers Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile have waived fees on donation texts.)

He’ll likely raise even more during Hope for Haiti, a multi-network telethon set to air next Friday, with Jean hosting in New York, George Clooney (who will be co-producing) in Los Angeles, and CNN’s Anderson Cooper reporting from Haiti.

Singer Maxwell, whose mother is Haitian, is also using his website to direct donations; Madonna donated $250,000 to Partners in Health and encouraged others to join her in a statement on her website; and Not On Our Watch, a charitable organization founded by Clooney, Brad Pitt, and Matt Damon (among others) has sent $1 million of their own to Partners in Health.

How can you help? The two easiest ways are as follows:

Text YELE to 501501 to donate $5 on behalf of The Yele Haiti Foundation
Text HAITI to 90999 to donate $10 on behalf of the American Red Cross

Please give what you can, and feel free to use this comment board as an open forum to share thoughts, prayers, and information about the ongoing tragedy in Haiti.

UPDATE 1/18/10: In response to allegations that he has paid himself with money from his Yele Haiti Foundation, Wyclef has posted the following video.

(Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix.)

Photo Credit: Scott Weiner/Retna

Comments (40 total) Add your comment
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  • mishka

    Great job, Wyclef.
    Madonna could do way much better.
    Didn’t expect less from Brangelina. While married to Jennifer Aniston, Brad Pitt wasn’t involved in charity that much, the woman might be miser.
    And what about Mr and Mrs Jay-Z? Diddy? Keys? Will Smith? All those AA-listed and our so-called “brothers” we can’t spend a day without hearing about?

    • minillia

      Or Brad just adopted the personality of his latest woman like he usually does.

    • Stupidityisnotadisease

      Miska, you might want to do some research before making stupid comments. Brangelina did not discover charity, regardless of what their PR people put out. Pleaase do not bold statements without proof, it only shows a lack of education. I’m sure you’re much better than that, at least i hope you are.

    • Preston

      I’m sure that all those other celebrities will donate money to Haiti. They just won’t publicize it or make a big announcement like others. They’ll make undisclosed amounts that won’t be said to the public. And Madonna’s $250,000 donation is very generous.

  • BSB

    Mishka you are a fool to make statements you can not back up with facts. Jennifer Aniston gave to charity before she even met Brad Pitt. She gave to St Jude and the Cancer soc. then and during her time with Pitt. I am sure he gave at that time also but maybe just didn’t feel the need to let the world know like he does now. Why don’t you take some time and give a little of yourself instead of bashing people on this web site. You have no idea if any of these other people have given or how much. Not every one turns it into a PR stunt. Look, you put down Madonna and she gave–what does that say about you? It says you are a no good, big mouth nothing.

    • PHD

      great comments…please give whatever you can

  • thanks for your input

    umm thanks mishka,
    just because they don’t publicize it, doesn’t mean they are not doing anything. they are not obligated to tell you jack about what they do with their money.
    Secondly, is Pitt not his own man? Can he not make decisions for himself? you tryiing to blame his apathy on his ex-wife?
    Btw – Jennifer was more involved in charities than Brad ever was when they were together. She didn’t make a big splash about it, because that’s just not who she is.

  • thanks for your input

    ha! BSB you beat me to the punch! some people say the wierdest things

  • kel

    Who cares about these details people?! Just donate and encourage your friends and family to do the same.

    • Jean Genie

      Um, maybe because these stars have more money than the average joe can dream of? I’m giving too – just not saying how much, since it’ll be just a drop in the bucket.

      • kct

        Even if it’s just a drop in the bucket, every penny counts. The kids in our school district are collecting loose change, and have named their effort, “United for Change.” My kids were able to scrounge up about $18 in change in about 20 minutes- more then many Haitian families make in two weeks. Give what can- it will matter.

  • Jerry

    Wow, childishness has taken over a few people. Who cares about comparing who to who and who did what when. Unless it is written, no one knows charitable history, so that is just dumb. People are dying by the thousands and all you folks can do is bring up stupidity. Congrats to all who are giving NOW and those who lead the way.

  • Jean Genie

    Yeah, but what about Bono & Bruce themselves?

    • Mydeso

      Just do that is what counts! Our elementary is asking everyone to bring in a dollar and together it will add up.

  • Seymour

    You might want to do some research into Wyclef’s charity before donating to it. Also, even if it is totally legitimate, there are other charities better able to provide disaster relief services, like Doctors without Borders and the Red Cross. I really hope that donations to Wyclef’s charity don’t divert funds that would otherwise have gone to these very worthy organizations.


  • Preston

    I comment Wyclef Jean for helping his home country Haiti with his Yele Haiti Foundation as well as other celebrities who have donated money.

    • Bin

      Donna,Knock em dead at the Egyptian Theater tonight. I hope you enjoy your stage reutrn as much as we all look forward to being entertained by you again, LIVE!

  • jan

    people that give without blowing their own trumpet are in my mind classy and do not use disasters to get pr. we do not need celebs to tell us to give as i am sure everybody gives daily to the poor and will give willingly without having to be told too. i am sick of the brand using the disasters for good pr i wish they will shutup and do good deeds without telling the world. people please give every day to the poor and not just when something bad happens there are people in need everyday. jmo

  • Lundn

    Please people refrain from your harsh words. A donation no matter the size, helps. Who are we to say who should give what! So many things go on that we are unaware of, many people give donations anonamously. Please let’s spend our time not ridiculing others. Let’s pull together a d see what we ALL do no matter the size. A poor man can give prayer and that is priceless.

  • Paul Burrell

    notice how the large donations are not going to yele? These are folks who want to work with a long-serving agency which knows logistics and has a lot of Haitian staff. Not someone apparently skimming 400k from his own foundation.

  • rose

    sad that it takes an earthquake to get folks to pay attention to the poverty ih Haiti, those people have been eating clay for lack of food. We should be ashamed.

  • ming ming

    According to the new york times, wyclef jean has not filed an income tax return on his supposed charity. many of these “celebrities” with their “charities” are making money from their fans. Buyer/donator beware!!!

    • Ahmad

      Florian – This is awesome thknas for your effort. Just bought a painting from Joe Iurato in a similar project.I hope everybody is spreading the word keep us updated on the progress.Cheers, Florian

  • Cheap Aniston

    Don’t condemn Madonna’s donation. At least she has donated. EVERY MILLIONAIRE CELEB SHOULD GIVE BEFORE DARING TO ASK OTHERS TO GIVE. Ordinary Americans are in our own economic crisis. But the stars have millions. They san eacy afforsd to vgive many thousands.

    Where is Jennifer Aniston’s donation?

    In 2005, Aniston participated in the Katrina telethon. Weeks later it was revealed that, while she asked poor americans to give, she sat on her millions and had given NOTHING. She is without shame.

    WATER is urgently needed in Haiti, yet she has donated neither money nor water from the company she represents. She is the CHEAPEST WOMAN IN HOLLYWOOD!

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