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 48 hours of the disaster.
Less than a week after the tsunami, estimating that we had already received sufficient funds for our foreseen emergency activities, MSF began asking donors to stop giving donations for MSF's response to this particular emergency. Instead they were encouraged to support our work providing medical care in other emergencies and ongoing conflicts such as DRCongo, Somalia or the Darfur region of Sudan.
MSF offices around the world also began contacting individuals requesting their permission to use their funds to support MSF's work in emergencies elsewhere in the world. This process is still ongoing, but so far an overwhelming majority of the donors have accepted that we use their donations elsewhere. 52% 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 23.5% of the donations and 1% has been refunded on request.
MSF is extremely grateful for the unprecedented surge of spontaneous donations we received following the tsunami disaster and will continue to use this money to provide medical and psychosocial care in the regions affected by the tsunami.
At the same time, we are heartened by the trust our supporters have placed in us in allowing us to use their funds where they are needed most.
We believe that being open and transparent with our donors about how we use their funds is essential, as it is their support that allows us to alleviate the suffering of the most vulnerable in the worst conflicts and disasters around the world.