The United Nations officially declared a famine in East Africa. Verizon Wireless has quickly implemented a mobile giving program for customers looking for a simple way to contribute to relief efforts in East Africa. The company said today that customers can use their mobile phones to make $10 donations to a variety of nonprofit organizations responding to the famine and the millions of people in need of food aid ÔÇô including UNICEF, World Vision and International Rescue Committee.
"When the U.N. declared a famine in East Africa, we knew that our innovative technology could help make a difference. We quickly took action and set up this mobile giving campaign, offering our customers an easy and secure way to get involved in the relief efforts," said Marquett Smith, vice president of corporate communications at Verizon Wireless.
Customers can choose from three different nonprofit organizations and make $10 donations by sending a text message. Donating is easy ÔÇô customers simply text the specific word to the organization's designated short code:
ÔÇó International Rescue Committee: Text "#AFRICA" to 25383
ÔÇó UNICEF: Text "FOOD" to 864233
ÔÇó World Vision: Text "4AFRICA" to 20222
Verizon Wireless always waives text-messaging fees for disaster relief, so text messages are free when used to make donations to any of these organizations, and 100 percent of each $10 donation goes to the relief organization. For Verizon Wireless customers who pay monthly bills, the $10 donations will appear on the next regular monthly bill. For customers using the company's prepaid services, the $10 donation will be taken from customers' prepaid balance.