Rational Group Raise $560k For Typhoon Haiyan VictimsJuly 23, 2014 1:53 pm
Last November, one of the strongest tropical cyclones ever recorded, Typhoon Haiyan, struck Southeast Asia resulting in 6,300 deaths in the Philippines, alone. Straight after the tragic event, The Rational Group (owners of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker) organized a “Typhoon Fund” enabling players to donate money to charities supporting the relief effort.
Six months later, and it has been revealed $280,039 was raised by PokerStars and Full Tilt customers, with the amount subsequently matched by Rational Group, resulting in a total of $560,078 being handed over to the CARE International foundation. In addition to its other humanitarian endeavors, the global poverty fighting organization also helps “deliver emergency aid to survivors of war and natural disasters, and help people rebuild their lives,” as explained on its site.
Details on how the money was allocated has been released in a ‘Philippines 6-month Typhoon Haiyan report.pdf‘, and was further reported by Sue Hammett on her PokerStars blog piece entitled “Typhoon Haiyan half a year on.” As an extract of Hammett’s blog, explains:
“252,115 people received food relief, plus an additional 3,700 people benefited from cash transfers to purchase food at local markets. Overall, CARE and their local partners delivered more than 1,115 metric tons of food.”
PokerStars and the poker community as a whole have a history of raising money in response to global tragedies. In 2004, for instance,
PokerStars increased the $187,768 donated by its customers to $400k in order to aid the Indian Ocean tsunami relief efforts, while in 2005, PokerStars and its players raised more than $100,000 for Hurricane Katrina victims. Other charities which have benefited from the poker community in the past includes AIDS research, Darfur relief, and cancer research.
Then, of course, there is the high-profile WSOP $1 million buy-in event known as ‘The Big One for One Drop’, which raised more than $4 million in both 2012 and 2014 for Guy Laiberte’s One Drop charity. Furthermore, in 2012, Greenlight Capital President, David Einhorn, finished 3rd in the event for $4,352,000, all of which he then proceeded to donate to the accessible safe water project.