A BLOG POST BY STEPHENIE FOSTER The multiple disasters facing Japan have shocked us all: the destructive force of the earthquake, the resulting tsunami, and the potential meltdowns of the nuclear power plants. It is estimated that 21,000 people are either dead or missing, and there is unimaginable damage and then rebuilding to come. Reports are that 300,000 people on Honshu Island are living in shelters, a million homes don’t have water, more than 14,000 buildings have been destroyed and 100,000 plus buildings damaged. The World Bank estimates that the intertwined disasters have caused $235 billion in damage.
Unlike other recent disasters – in Haiti or in the US with Hurricane Katrina and other parts of the world, Australia, New Zeland – there hasn’t been the outpouring of relief support. The Japanese Embassy has now put out a call asking for relief. As relief does flow into Japan, it is critically important to ensure that relief reaches everyone. Donating to the Red Cross or other relief groups is obviously a good thing, but the Japan Multicultural Relief Fund is also doing outreach to underserved minorities in Japan. Let's support these groups to ensure that relief is there for all.