The people  of Haiti have been devastated by earthquakes and the destruction of their infrastructure. Relief groups have been trying to get help, supplies, and basic life necessities to those is need. We know of the new ability to make a donation through a Text Message (Text “HAITI” to 90999 to donate $10 to the Red Cross).  Already, the 90999 text message has delivered millions of dollars to relief for those in Haiti.

But the most unique use of social media to help the people of Haiti was found in an article I read about a girl who lives in Montreal, who normally organizes lunches for corporations and writes music. Rachelle Houde is ‘a key cog in a volunteer network that’s coordinating the movement of water and other supplies around Haiti using Twitter and a relatively new software called Ushahidi, which allows text messages to be mapped by time and location.’

When buildings  are destroyed and street signs are gone, volunteers on site in Haiti don’t know where they are or how to get to the place they are supposed to deliver the supplies.  Volunteers using software are bridging the gap. Ushahidi software and GPS are the keys to making this massive volunteer effort work for the ultimate customer: the children in two orphanages in Port-au-Prince.

When the earthquake first happened, Houde found herself in a chat room with someone from Haiti and they were both speaking Creole. No one else understood. She has been relentless through multiple social media conduits, trying to help.

Customer service is about solving problems. This wonderful young lady is doing her part to solve problems in Haiti, from her apartment in Montreal, using new tools and techniques.  Bravo Rachelle!

Read the full article at the Toronto Star–twitter-spells-remote-control-relief-via-montreal

We can all learn from this innovative approach to problem solving in our efforts to satisfy our customers.


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Adele Berenstein

Adele Berenstein is an Experienced Customer Satisfaction Executive, recently retired from a Large Global IT Organization after a long productive management career including Sales, Marketing, Services, teaching and education center management and most recently, 19 years in customer satisfaction management. She turned around divisions with customer satisfaction problems, implemented measurable improvements and management systems, and implemented programs to prevent problems from ever affecting customers.

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