YPDR recognizes that where one spends their money is just as important as how they spend their money. We have no international office in London, New York, or Paris. Our offices and our worksites are in the same place — in the disaster zones we work in. We believe in minimizing the percentage of donations that go towards administration and away from materials, labor, and other active programs. But we also make sure that as much of our expenditures as possible, even the administration costs, stays and is spent within the disaster zone.
We want to help. We want to have positive change on the community. But we have found that aid, as it is commonly understood, can do more harm than good. So we pick our projects, and make sure that we do them right. We do not subscribe to the “billions of drops in millions of buckets” philosophy. Rather we choose to work where we see a need, where we believe we can be effective, and where we can focus on each problem until it is resolved. We do not, and will not, throw money at an issue and pretend it is solved. Spending a lot of money can be far less effective than spending a little, but intelligently. We are committed to providing the services we provide as effectively as possible, in the name of economic development and the jobs it creates.
A home, a classroom, a toilet. We work to make sure that everything we build, everything we work on, is designed to be sustainable and to last. We believe that we are constructing foundations for permanent, sustained recovery. We aim to create jobs, invest in education, and design institutions that will provide job training and career opportunities down the road. We want to make sure that if and when YPDR leaves this island or slows down its operations, the community we leave behind feels little to no impact from our withdrawal.
We measure our success not by the number of people we help, but by the number of people who no longer need our help.