Less than 24 hours after terrorist attacks besieged Paris, citizens near and far have already mobilized to help survivors and their families.
The French Red Cross has hundreds of volunteers in Paris helping with the relief effort. You can also donate from anywhere in the world via the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. The American Red Cross is not currently accepting donations, but issued a statement of support on Saturday.
Locally, Parisians lined up Saturday morning and reportedly waited for hours to donate blood for the victims, many of whom are in critical condition after suicide bombs and mass shootings left them with major blood loss. Photos from around the city show people waiting patiently on lines snaked around a number of blocks.
People in Paris have been queueing up for hours to donate blood. pic.twitter.com/n06XCbCple— Ben Phillips (@benphillips76) November 14, 2015
According to BuzzFeed News, Airbnb sent its users an email that said, “If you are able, we hope you will strongly consider helping those who are in need by making your listing available at little or no cost. Also, if you’re an Airbnb host in Paris and your Airbnb guest is experiencing travel delays as they try to leave Paris, you can allow your guest to extend their stay for free.”
Facebook also rolled out two features in the immediate aftermath of the attacks to help ease fears and show support. They created a feature that people in Paris could utilize to let their friends and family know they were safe.
They’ve also added a feature that allows users to modify their profile photos to be colored like the French flag, something popular they did when same-sex marriage was legalized back in June.
Other fundraising efforts are underway, with people setting up individual pages on sites like GoFundMe, Crowdrise, and Ammado. It’s important during times of crisis—when people are so eager to help—to double check that you’re donating to a verified charity.
A spokesperson for GoFundMe told the Daily Dot: “For these types of high-profile events, GoFundMe conduct an extra layer of diligence to ensure that campaigns are genuine. Before campaigns go live, we confirm the identity of the organizer, the connection to the beneficiary, and that the campaign clearly states how the funds will be used.”
Photo via Fredrik Rubensson/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)