Helping Nepal

By Tom Tarantino

When you wake up on a Saturday with a full inbox, you know either something wonderful or terrible just happened. Unfortunately, this past Saturday, it was the latter. Being a native San Franciscan, watching the devastation and loss of life from the massive 7.8 earthquake in Nepal was especially chilling. I wanted to do something and I wanted to help.

The Twitter platform is always ready to get to work when disaster strikes. Time and again it’s proved its value as an efficient way for people to mobilize to disseminate news, coordinate response efforts, connect victims to friends and families, and to raise funds for relief efforts. Because Twitter is live, conversational and in real time, it provides governments, victims and aid organizations the ability to communicate instantaneously around the world. In the past we have seen Twitter be used to coordinate relief efforts, and be used as a backup for official channels of communication. As a company, Twitter can help organize and accelerate these efforts.

We aren’t a relief organization or an NGO, but we have mobilized a team to do three immediate things:

  1. Disseminate information and news about the disaster globally
  2. Help key nonprofits raise funds and material donations for victim relief
  3. Help local agencies coordinate relief efforts

Twitter’s power is the ability to instantaneously connect people to what they care about. In times of crisis, it’s our responsibility to make that experience as effective and efficient as possible. Almost immediately, news organizations turned to Twitter to report about the quake.


Taking cues from users in the relief community, we are regionally promoting the hashtag #NepalQuakeRelief and linking it to @InCrisisRelief, a community-driven hub of local crisis response information.

Across the world we are leveraging a combination of native Twitter accounts, local and international power users, and Promoted Tweets, to help relief organizations communicate critical information locally and raise funds internationally.

Every day, Twitter connects people to what they care about. Today, along with the rest of the world, we care about helping Nepal. As this long recovery effort continues, we will continue to adapt to what our users need and find ways to leverage our platform for good.

Check out @InCrisisRelief locally and @Oxfam, @UNICEF, @CARE, @Federation and @WVasia internationally, for a wide variety of ways you can help the people of Nepal.