It’s been a long weekend for all of us, and I hope that everyone you know is safe. The news is heart wrenching, but it is encouraging to see relief efforts are underway, and to hear about the responses from the international community. Please know that we, your PNWJETAA steering council, intend to support Japan and everyone we know there through sharing information, encouraging donations, and providing you with opportunities to help out. We hope to have concrete fundraising events posted later this week. If you would like to help organize an event, or have other suggestions, please email us at officers at pnwjetaa dot org.
Below is a round up of resources and ways to donate. It’s by no means a complete list, but at least it is a place to start.
Locate People in Japan
Google Person Finder – Find people or update information
Japan Local Government Center (CLAIR New York) – Lists current JETs confirmed safe
News & Resources
JETWit.com – Updates by prefecture from reader submissions
JETAA USA – Plans for JET Alumni Association national and local responses
Embassy of Japan – Official statements and correspondence
NHK World News – News and video
So far, Japan has not asked for donations of physical goods. It seems the biggest impact we can make right now is through online donations. All donations below are tax-deductible.
The Seattle Japanese-American and Japan-related communities are encouraging people to donate to Peace Winds America and the Red Cross. PNWJETAA is part of this collaboration.
The Seattle-based office of a Japanese NGO (Peace Winds Japan) with local experience in Japanese disaster relief and recovery. They are also a partner of Mercy Corps. Peace Winds America is pledging that 100% of donated funds will go directly to disaster relief.
You can also make a $10 donation by texting REDCROSS to 90999. Donations will go to support relief efforts for the earthquake in Japan and tsunami throughout the Pacific region.
The New York chapter is accepting donations. The Northern California chapter is also accepting donations, and I will add their link shortly. Due to their 501(c)3 non-profit status, donations are tax-deductible, and 100% of the donations received will go to relief organizations specialized in education/schools/children in stricken areas. Funds may also go toward funding the trips and relief efforts of JET alumni who want to go to Japan to help out.
I know a lot of us feel helpless, because we’re so far away. However, donating to organizations are absolutely supportive, and should not be overlooked. Again, if you are interested in organizing a fundraiser, please email us at officers at pnwjetaa dot org. Don’t be intimidated–it can be as simple as inviting your friends to meet at a bar, and asking them to donate a few dollars. There are some great suggestions here from JETAA USA.
Updated to add: Hyogo Business and Cultural Center has more resources here.
Update 2: Added SeattleJapanRelief info and confirmed that Peace Winds America is donating 100% of proceeds to disaster relief.