MSF and donations for South Asia Tsunami Relief

The ongoing generosity of our supporters enables MSF's emergency medical relief work and, therefore, we believe that being open and transparent with our donors about how we are using their funds is extremely important. MSF is very grateful for the unprecedented surge of spontaneous donations we received following the tsunami disaster.
Following the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit South Asia on December 26, 2004, Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) received an enormous outpouring of support from donors around the world for our emergency relief work in the region. MSF sections worldwide received 105 million Euros in donations for MSF's tsunami relief work. By the end of March 2005, MSF had spent over 16 million Euros on our emergency operations in South Asia and will likely spend in excess of 22 million Euro for tsunami-related relief activities in 2005. The generosity of hundreds of thousands of MSF donors worldwide made it possible for MSF teams to begin assessing the needs and providing medical relief in the most-affected areas of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and other countries within 24 hours of the disaster. Less than a week after the tsunami, estimating that we had already received sufficient funds for our foreseen emergency response in the region, MSF began asking donors to make only "unrestricted" donations allowing us to use the their donations to provide emergency medical care where it is most needed, whether in high-profile crises like the South Asia tsunami, or to help victims of ongoing conflicts in DR Congo or Darfur, Sudan In addition, in early January, MSF offices around the world began contacting individuals who contributed to MSF's tsunami relief efforts to request their permission to use their funds to support MSF's work in emergencies elsewhere in the world. This process is ongoing, but so far an overwhelming majority of donors who originally designated their donations to the South Asia emergency have agreed to derestrict their donations to MSF. 43% of the funds initially received for the emergency can now be used to support MSF's other emergency medical programs around the world. MSF seeks to derestrict a further 35% of the donations received. To date, less than 1% (920,000 Euros) of the total contributions received have been refunded. MSF is heartened by the trust our supporters have placed in us in allowing us to direct their funds to where they are needed most. The ongoing generosity of our supporters enables MSF's emergency medical relief work and, therefore, we believe that being open and transparent with our donors about how we are using their funds is extremely important. MSF is very grateful for the unprecedented surge of spontaneous donations we received following the tsunami disaster. As a needs-driven emergency medical organisation, MSF is committed to alleviating the suffering of the most vulnerable in the worst conflicts and disasters around the world. MSF continues to work in Aceh, Indonesia, and in other tsunami-affected regions in future and, thanks to the generosity of tens of thousands of donors worldwide, has sufficient funds to do so. For updates on MSF's work in South Asia and around the world, please see our websites.