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Earthquake in Kumamoto; Tohoku’s Local Governments Send out Aid Personnel

We express our deep sympathy to the victims of the earthquake hit the Kumamoto Prefecture, Southern Japan.

With aftershocks continuing rattling Kumamoto, relief efforts on the ground are being run by the Self Defense Forces, the police, medical organizations and so on. Among them are local officials who have been dispatched from across the country including the city of Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, in the Tohoku region.

As Ishinomaki signed “Mutual Disaster Assistance Agreement” with Yatsushiro, Kumamoto Prefecture, on November 15, 2011, it was quick to send an aid convoy of its officials and trucks with drinking water and food to Yatsushiro on April 16.

After the Great East Earthquake five years ago, both public and private sectors in Kumamoto provided wide range of assistance for Tohoku’s disaster-stricken areas, including dispatching healthcare workers or engineers to local government offices, donating money, sending relief supplies, providing housing, offering job assistance, holding exchange meetings and so on.

Then it’s Tohoku’s turn.

Providing human resources or relief goods is not the only form of assistance.
Miyako City Council of Social Welfare, via its website, put out “actions people should truly take for victims in the wake of disaster”, lessons it learned from its experience, which it can tell all the more because it has gone through the Great East Earthquake.


According to the website, during the post-disaster period, doing what you think is right for victims can have the opposite effect; if too many people visit disaster cites to participate in volunteer activities, that can cause traffic jam; sending relief goods individually can create extra work for victims like sorting out to distribute them.
Our immediate focus should be as follows:

(1) if possible, make a donation or help victims by buying local products;

(2) refrain from sending relief goods after listening media reports on what victims are in need of (since the plight of the victims changes every day so much so that they will have received more than enough relief goods by the time they get the delivery from you.)

【Ishonomaki city, April, 2011:They are preparing meals outdoor during the Great East Earthquake.】


【Ishonomaki city, April, 2011:They are distributing clothing during the Great East Earthquake.】

【Ishonomaki city, April, 2016: From Hiyoriyama hill; You can see Kdonowaki Elementary School enclosed by fences a short distance back from the cherry trees, Kitakami river and the Pacific Ocean in the distance.】

We can provide the very assistance because we experienced the Great East Japan Earthquake. In this year of 2016 as well, JEN is committed to working on disaster recovery along with the disaster victims.


【JEN is now asking for donations. Click here to donate】

April 21, 2016 in Tohoku earthquake |