NU Online News Service, Jan. 22, 3:20 p.m. EST

Relief efforts by the insurance industry to help victims of the catastrophic 7.0 earthquake in Haiti continue to grow, with announcements of donations by The Travelers, CPCU Society, Crawford & Company and the Risk and Insurance Management Society.

The Travelers Foundation said it is sending $50,000 to the American Red Cross to assist relief efforts. It also has created a special disaster relief matching program to match employee donations up to $50,000. Travelers employees may contribute between $25 and $500 to the Haitian earthquake relief efforts through the American Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders, International Rescue Committee, Save the Children, UNICEF or the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and have their contributions matched, the company said.

“Our hearts go out to the Haitian people as they face the aftermath of this natural disaster,” said Marlene Ibsen, chief executive officer and president of the Travelers Foundation.

The CPCU Society said it has established a special fund to aid victims of the Haiti earthquake. By a unanimous resolution of its board of directors, the Society also committed itself to match the contributions of its members and chapters up to $25,000. The funds will be donated to the Clinton/Bush Haiti Fund of former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.

“The Society’s members hold a vast array of positions in the property and casualty insurance industry, including as agents, brokers, underwriters, risk managers, adjusters, accountants and attorneys,” explained Society CEO James R. Marks. “As such they are keenly sensitive to tragic events, and deeply sympathetic with the suffering of the Haitian people.”

The CPCU Society noted it is reprising a similar program it carried out in 2005, when it raised $60,000 for the American Red Cross to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Society members and chapters have been asked to submit their contributions by Feb. 19.

Crawford & Company said it has contributed $10,000 to Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) to aid the group’s medical relief efforts in Haiti.

“Due to the nature of our business, we have witnessed first-hand the ongoing crisis in Haiti caused by last week’s earthquake,” said Jeffrey T. Bowman, Crawford’s president and CEO. “Because of the critical need for medical care, we believe that a contribution to Doctors Without Borders will be the most effective one we can make at this time.”

According to the MSF Web site (www.doctorswithoutborders.com), the organization is currently operating in a number of locations in and around the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince. More than 1,500 patients have received treatment at a hospital in Martissant, and MSF also recently began working in Port-au-Prince’s General Hospital. After delays, the construction of an inflatable hospital also has begun.

“This is a disaster of unimaginable proportions for the people of Haiti, and indeed, for a number of our employees who have suffered the loss of loved ones in this terrible tragedy. We encourage our employees who are able to do so to consider contributing to this relief organization or others of their choice to support the efforts being made in Haiti,” Mr. Bowman said.

RIMS also announced it has made a donation of $10,000 to the Red Cross to support emergency relief and recovery efforts for those affected by the earthquake in Haiti.

RIMS encouraged others to donate to this important cause and recommended that potential donors review tips for safe and efficient donations by the New York Times: http://bucks.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/15/tips-for-safe-and-efficient-giving-to-help-haiti/ .