Lions, LCIF Mobilizing More Than US$5 Million for Disaster Relief Efforts in Japan
Following last Friday’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Lions and LCIF are working to provide relief to those affected by the disaster. LCIF is mobilizing more than US$5 million, or 400 million Japanese Yen, to support immediate relief efforts. This includes major catastrophe grant funding, seven emergency grants of US$10,000 each to the seven affected districts and designated donations from Lions around the world.
This morning, several of our staff members in Oak Brook spoke with Lions in Japan. International Directors Furo and Yamaura provided an update on relief efforts, and Lion Tsugumichi Hata, who lives in Sendai, provided an update on the devastation and needs.
Just yesterday, Lions were finally able to make contact with Lions in the hardest hit areas. Within two days of the disaster, Lions had established a relief center at the Lions office in Japan, as well as two bases in each of the Lions’ affected multiple districts. Lions have also sent a truckload of water. “The damage differs from place to place. Lifelines are mostly restored, but there is a gas shortage. I can’t travel far in my car to assess the needs and damage,” said Hata.
During the call, a 6.0 earthquake struck in Tokyo and was felt in Sendai. “This disaster hasn’t stopped, it’s still ongoing,” said Hata. Lions described the shaking over the call. “On behalf of all Lions of Japan, we wish to thank all of you for your support,” said Furo. Lions are appreciative of the immediate response of LCIF and Lions worldwide.
Lions have planned a coordination meeting for March 21, 2011. Lions from the most affected areas will travel to Japan to take part in the meeting and plan the next steps for relief efforts.
- Learn more about our relief efforts in Japan, and how you can help.
- View map of Lions Clubs in the disaster area.