REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 31, 2001 — On Jan. 26, a devastating earthquake struck the western Indian state of Gujarat and was felt throughout the Indian subcontinent. The quake measured 7.9 on the Richter scale and has caused widespread loss of life, left tens of thousands homeless and produced life-threatening challenges for survivors and rescuers alike.
Indian children take temporary shelter after a devastating earthquake in Gujarat leaves tens of thousands of people homeless.
Microsoft Community Affairs, working in close cooperation with the Microsoft India office, has donated $75,000 in cash to CARE, an international relief agency with a long history of humanitarian work in India. According to several relief organizations, cash donations provide the most immediate and flexible resources to meet emergency needs. The donation will be used to purchase food, water, clothing, shelter material and other supplies to aid the survivors.
Rajiv Kaul, President of Microsoft India, has been coordinating Microsoft’s efforts in the disaster-stricken country. The company will be working with the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), which has set up a “Gujarat Relief Fund” — member companies have pledged contributions to this fund, which will provide for 500 doctors; 20 tons of food; 20,000 blankets; 500 trucks of drinking water; 500 blowtorches and concrete drilling machines to locate and remove human remains; and the “adoption” of a village to help rebuild it.
As is often true, the events in this region are not part of some distant, international news story, but strike close to home. Beyond the fact that Microsoft has a sales and marketing office in India as well as a growing development center, the employees of Microsoft in India and around the world have many personal ties that connect them to the people and the hardships of this disaster. Some of these employees have taken the initiative to match other employees’ donations and we commend their generosity and quick action.
Inclusion in the following list is based on membership in Interaction ( www.interaction.org ), an umbrella organization that has a set of accountability, fundraising, operational and managerial standards that each of its members must meet, including a long and proven track record responding to complex humanitarian emergencies, and relief operations in the country or an operational presence prior to the disaster. For more information about Microsoft’s giving policies and work, please visit www.microsoft.com/giving .