Small Efforts Can Make A Huge Difference For Tohoku

I wasn't sure about this, but for a local effort here were I live, I was able to raise over 180,000 Yen from a Swedish tour company, and we are of course happy to receive more. I just want to make sure you, dear Kurashi readers, long-suffering as most of you most likely are, do NOT think I am suddenly using this blog to ask for money. In fact, most of you who live here have probably already put a couple of coins in the local 7-11 box.

From what I hear, every Yen matters. The good people at Peace Boat will help you if you want to personally go on a few days of journey to Tohoku. There are other ways you can help, of course.

From abroad, the Japanese Red Cross is still the best option, do ask your local/national Red Cross chapter how that works from where you live. The Japan Red Cross has a long history here, and they may be a bit slow, but if that is the best option, rather than going for some unknown entity, then you will at least rest assured that your contribution will reach people in need. Be careful and avoid strange emails (although so far, I haven't heard of any such attempts).

My local outfit, Far East Inc. has a lot of stuff they want to send to Tohoku. They have a major challenge: the cost of gas.

A one way trip to Fukushima from Hanno, Saitama costs about 20,000 Yen including Highway Toll Fees. Round trip, 40,000 Yen. Thus, as people happily give stuff for the people in small towns up there, knowing they need a lot, it is not just a matter of the goods, we also need cash and people to bring the stuff, to the people. And gasoline is NOT cheap. In fact, it has probably never been more dear.

Yesterday, as I went to their warehouse, I was impressed by the amount of boxes. I do hope all of the donated stuff can reach the people who are in need.

My email is listed under the "about" section. I hope you will get in touch in case you have ideas about donations to our small, but not insignificant, project!


Pandabonium said…
After 311, I gave as much as I could to the Japan Red Cross right away, as it was easy to do and I knew I could trust that my donation would get to the people who need it.

But there are many levels of help which can fill in gaps and provide needed things in a timely and very focused manner.

Go go go! I hope you get all the help you require. You can count on me.

"Come on people now, smile on your brother, everybody get together and help one another right now!" ~ The Youngbloods, Get Together.
Tom O said…
Is it just me thinking this but should there not be a special dispensation of sorts for trucks/vans SPECIFICALLY going to Tohoku for humanitarian reasons and to assist?? Ie remove requisite toll charges, give discounts on petrol (aka 'gasoline' in some parts of the world ;o) ) or even provide vouchers to enable procurement for free. A 'little' that would mean a lot. The Japanese government has done much to harness mistrust in the Fukushima region with its smoke and mirrors approach to actual truth - some gestures really wouldn't and still would not cost them a lot - help and back up is gonna be required for sometime yet.

Tohoku/Fukushima - its going to be a marathon not a sprint, lets not forget about them for a LONG time.

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