Western Union to send aid to Indonesia

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●      The money transfer brand has over 14,000 locations in Indonesia

●      The country recently experienced a devastating earthquake that was followed by a tsunami

●      Indonesia’s president has called for support.


International money transfer giant Western Union has committed to send relief to Indonesia after a devastating earthquake and tsunami hit the Southeast Asian nation. The catastrophe affected 2.4 million people, displacing over 60,000 residents. Apart from the structural damage and the number of people who have lost their homes, the death toll has already reached over 1,500 and it has continued to rise. Based on reports from the Disaster Management Agency, an estimated 5,000 people are also said to be missing. Rescue attempts are still ongoing on the island of Sulawesi, according to Indonesian media. Rescue teams from around the world are working side by side to find survivors.


Right on Facebook’s crisis response page, a number of Indonesians are now offering shelter to those who have been displaced while others are raising funds for Sulawesi.


As the country reels from the disaster, Indonesia’s head of state has called for support from non-profit organisations and Western Union, one of the most popular money transfer services in the country, has pledged its support to help the survivors of the quake and tsunami. In a statement, Western Union executives said: “Our Foundation’s long-standing commitment to helping people around the world is steeped in the belief that every person has the right to access basic needs for survival, so it is our mission to support communities in need.”


The money transfer brand has more than 14,000 agent locations in Indonesia, making the country one of its largest markets in the region.


The foundation is working with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in an effort to send help immediately. Western Union said that funds raised by the company will be spent on shelter, livelihood, healthcare, hygiene, sanitation and drinking water.

The Western Union Foundation has pledged $25,000 to Red Cross according to reports, but this is just the initial amount. The foundation has also called on its agent locations to support the cause with the foundation matching every qualifying contribution. The effort will likely translate to a total of $75,000.


Elizabeth Roscoe, the VP and Executive Director of the foundation told the media that WU acts as fast as it can when disasters strike. She said: “It is critical that we invest to help local people and their families rebuild for a better future.”


Indonesia has experienced a number of quakes and aftershocks in the past few months, hitting one of its tourist destinations. Lombok is still recovering from this disaster. The foundation, along with its local agents, reportedly donated over $31,000 to Red Cross and Red Crescent to help Lombok.


The Western Union Foundation donated a whopping $17 million to survivors of natural disasters based on data from 2001 to 2017. Last year, the foundation sent aid to 13 areas.

Read our review of Western Union services here.

Andrea Barnes
Andrea is Communications Manager at FXcompared. Prior to joining FXcompared, she worked as a communications consultant for companies seeking guidance with their social media, marketing and digital… Read more

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