Tokyo, March 18, 2011
- As Japan reels from its biggest disaster since WWII, World Vision assists those in tsunami area
- Blankets, water and other basic supplies reach 6,000 survivors in Minami Sanriku on Friday
—As Japan approaches the one-week mark since the destructive 9.0 quake and tsunami hit, World Vision
relief distribution operations began today in Minami Sanriku, one of the hardest-hit coastal towns in the country.
Blankets, bottled water and sanitary and hygiene supplies are among the items in World Vision’s distribution to assist more than 6,000 people in urgent need. Some 9,600 townspeople have been displaced into 40 shelters in the tsunami-swept town in Miyagi prefecture, which, like many other areas of Japan, is experiencing below-freezing temperatures and snowfall.World Vision
is working with the local authorities who are organizing non-governmental assistance and helping assess which items are most needed by displaced survivors.
“The first step in any response, for children and adults, is to provide shelter, food and safe drinking water,” said World Vision relief manager Kenjiro Ban, who also worked in World Vision's quake response in Haiti last year.
“Priority needs also include supplies for babies and small children, and next steps will include setting up what we call Child Friendly Spaces, which are safe places for children where they can be protected, have structure and playtime, and begin to deal with the stress of the traumatic events they’ve just experienced.” Additional Updates:
- With 48 hours of the disaster, a Tokyo-based World Vision team reached Sendai to assess how the organization’s relief expertise can support the government-led response.
- A global team of emergency responders have been mobilized and dispatched from the U.S., Switzerland and the UK, with more on standby, to assist the efforts of World Vision’s Japan-based staff.
- World Vision’s Global Pre-positioning Response Network (GPRN), a logistics system that includes warehouses of relief supplies in Dubai and Frankfurt, is poised to ship urgent items to Japan as needed.
World Vision has worked in Japan
for more than two decades and responded to the massive Kobe earthquake in 1995 that claimed 5,500 lives. Last year, World Vision responded to nearly 80 emergencies including the Haiti earthquake and Pakistan floods. Its assessment team now in Sendai, is completing its rapid assessment of needs.Best Ways to Help:
Cash donations are the best method of getting relief supplies where they are most needed as quickly as possible. This can be done in 3 ways:
– cash grants from your company or foundation
– cash donations from your employees
– cash donations from your customersAt this time, World Vision is not receiving Gifts-In-Kind donations. Please contact your World Vision representative for ways your corporation can get involved in this response, or call1-800-642-1616.
For more information on World Vision’s efforts, please visit www.worldvision.org/press
. For Japan-specific updates, please visit http://www.worldvision.org/content.nsf/about/emergency-presskit-Japan-quake
. Or follow us on Twitter @worldvisionnewsWorld Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. We serve the world's poor -- regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. For more information, please visit www.worldvision.org/press