I was in the middle of finishing up my post for this week when my facebook news feed got flooded with status updates about an earthquake. Having come from the Miyagi Prefecture, where earthquakes are a very common occurrence (they told us upon arrival that there was a 99.9% chance of a “big one” hitting us), I didn’t think much of it. Until I saw the numbers. The Japanese Meteorological Agency is reporting a 7.9 while the U.S. Geological Survey has upgraded it to 8.9. If my memory serves me correctly, the biggest I felt was a 3 or a 4, which woke me up with vigorous shaking and rattled my dishes.
The quake hit off the Eastern coast, near the Miyagi Prefecture. Most of Japan is under a tsunami warning, and there has been a lot damage already. There are also aftershocks, which sometime are more dangerous. I’m watching the Al Jazeera English news feed, and it seems like while Tokyo is chaotic, it’s mostly okay. Miyagi, on the other hand, will have serious damage. The good news is that a handful of my friends who have internet access have reported that they’re okay. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone in Japan.
Updated March 22, 2011 10:57 PM
The JMA has revised the earthquake magnitude to 9.0. It is the largest earthquake to have ever hit Japan since they began recording magnitudes in 1800.
Earthquake and tsunami relief funds have been set up by many organizations:
- American Red Cross – You can also search for people who have registered themselves as safe.
- Australian Red Cross
- Convoy of Hope
- Global Giving
- Google Crisis Response – donations to Japanese Red Cross, Unicef, and Save the Children
- Japan Society
- JASDFW – Write a check out to “Japan-America Society of Dallas/Fort Worth” with “Sendai Relief Fund” in the memo and mail it to:
- Japan-America Society of Dallas/Fort Worth
- 11615 Forest Central Drive, Suite 26
- Dallas, TX 75243
- Music for Relief
- National JETAA USA Fund
- Save Miyagi Fund – The money will go directly to tsunami survivor Canon Purdy, who plans on returning to Miyagi to help rebuild the area.
- Second Harvest Japan
- Southlake Sister Cities – Write a check out to “Tome Earthquake Relief” and send it to:
- First Financial Bank
- 3205 E. Hwy 114
- P.O. Box 92480
- Southlake, TX 76092
- World Vision International (who are sending supplies and workers to Tome, the city I lived in)
For even more options, check out this site: InterAction.
If you’re a Lady Gaga fan, you can buy a wristband the singer designed to help her “Chiisana Bakemono”. – Lady Gaga Japan Earth Relief Wristband
Cosplayer Yaya Han is donating the profits she makes this month from selling her handmade cat ears, miniature hats, and wings, as well as her cosplay prints, to the Red Cross. Click here for links to her cosplay and print stores.
La Carmina has alerted me of two more efforts made by those in the J-fashion and music community. Takuya Angel is having a 20% off sale and donating all the proceeds to relief efforts. If you download music from HearJapan, 50% of your money will be donated.
If you want to splurge on a gift for someone, consider buying the TATCHA Kiri Gift Set. All profits from purchases made before March 31 will go towards Save the Children’s fund for earthquake and tsunami victims.
Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park has created two designs to sell. The proceeds will go to Music for Relief. Linkin Park has also written a new song that is part of the compilation you can download if you donate $10.
On the other side of the ocean, Ayumi Hamasaki has teamed up with Vivi to make a shirt for charity, which is also available to overseas fans.
If you’re a motorcycling enthusiast who wants to pay back Japan for creating Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, and Yamahan, then check out MotoForJapan. Several racers and industry members have already contributed to the fund, which goes to the American Red Cross.
Google CEO Eric Schmidt and his wife Wendy will match the first $100,000 donated to Citizen Effect. They have already given $19,000.