Please help people in Japan recover from the earthquake!

Blog entry created by: Teresa

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Written and posted by Bella

Give $5 or more to Round the World with Us for Japan Red Cross Earthquake Relief and we’ll send you one of these super-awesome “We Are One” charity bracelets.

We got them by donating $1,000 ourselves to the Red Cross when we visited Disneyland Tokyo yesterday.

Please click here to give now!

Here in Japan, Thousands upon thousands of people have lost their homes, family members, and/or friends. Japan has had many earthquakes before, but none this colossal, none so devastating.

Japan was hit hard. First the 9.0 magnitude earthquake stuck (the largest on record in Japan, and in the top 5 largest on record worldwide), which triggered the Tsunami and destroyed the homes of thousands of people, casting them out into the streets. Their homes and possessions were washed out to sea, destroyed or covered in muck.

As you know, the nuclear power plant in Japan had several explosions and is still facing a terribly dangerous situation. Most of my friends and family warned me to stay away from Japan altogether, saying that radiation was being strewn everywhere and it was going to become a dead zone. I don’t know what will happen eventually, but from what I see of Japan, the country is certainly not a dead zone, and radiation outside of a 50km radius measures from very low to 0 right now.

What I think is important right now is for people to pull together, whether they are dealing with the nuclear disaster, putting their lives back together after losing their home or a loved one (or both!), opening their homes to fellow Japanese as temporary housing, or live half a world away, in a country like America.

That is why I think we should all give something to help.

What it’s like here now:

The power plant was generating a big portion of electricity for a large amount of people. Hundreds of thousands of people were without power.  But gradually they have restored most of the power, lights have been turned on, temporary shelters were set up for the newly homeless, and people started the process of recovering from such devastation.

While visiting Tokyo, I can see that Japan is being very careful to conservative electricity. The subway system in Tokyo doesn’t run many of its escalators right now.  (meaning I have climbed many, many, many stairs traveling on the subway and the connected Japan Rail system!!) People make sure to shut of the lights when they are not needed…and there are signs everywhere as reminders.  Electric hand driers in bathrooms are turned off completely.

Disney questioned whether it should reopen because of the huge amount of electricity it uses. Some said that all that power could be used for something better, that it was a waste to use all power for rides and parades and that many people would be afraid to visit Japan.  But Japan is a vibrant country with a huge economy that depends on companies being open for business and lives getting back to normal as soon as possible.  I think it’s just like when people in the US needed to get over their fear of traveling after 9/11, Japan needs to deal with its emergency situation the best it can by controlling the radiation as much as possible, telling people the truth about what is safe and what isn’t, and then encouraging people to get on with their every day lives.

Disney decided to reopen in April, but it doesn’t put on most of its shows (like the electric light parade and the light show at the end of the night) in order to conserve energy.   Disney also donates part of the purchase price of every ticket and raises other funds for the Japanese Red Cross Society at its park. There we even girl scout troops just outside the park who were so cute that everyone seemed to be donating to them for earthquake relief!

There are volunteers all over the affected areas in Japan distributing food to those who need it, removing debris, uncovering homes, sifting through what is left of destroyed homes, and helping to save whatever can be salvaged, including precious family photos and important papers that are mixed in with all the muck.  They are helping those who need it.

I know most of us can’t help people put their lives back together literally by sifting through ruins for things that can be salvaged, or helping people move to temporary housing, but we can help make sure there is food for them at the distribution centers, that they can get access to medical care while they are in temporary housing, and that they can get the things they need to help them start the process of rebuilding their lives.

How can you do that?

Make a tax-deductible gift to Round the World with Us for the Japan Earthquake Relief Project and we will give 100% of your donation directly to the Japan Red Cross Society. They give all the basic necessities to the homeless of Japan. Food, water, shelter, you name it, the Red Cross is helping thousands recover from what they lost.

In case you weren’t paying attention, when I said it before, when we donated $1,000 ourselves to the Red Cross while visiting Disneyland Tokyo, they gave us 300 super awesome “We are One” charity bracelets (paid for by Disney) in return!  We are going to use these to raise more money:

If you donate 5$ to the ‘Japan Earthquake Relief’ on our website, you can get a super awesome bracelet too!  We will mail it to you.

It one of those rubber-y bracelets and it says “WE are ONE” in both English AND Japanese. So if you want one/ want to help the homeless get food, donate $5 (or more)!

P.S. (we only have 250 bracelets left, so if you want one, you better hurry!)

Please click here to donate now!

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Posted on: May 22, 2011 | Categories: Environment, Japan, Japan Earthquake Relief, News



  • Brett says:

    What a wonderful idea! We were just at Tokyo Disney as well this past weekend and bought quite a few of these bracelets for our family and friends (and to give our own donation). My wife also writes about Disney theme parks, wish we would have thought of doing something similar as well!

  • Teresa Teresa says:

    Sounds awesome, Brett! Did you have a good time in Japan? Do you live in the US? We can mail you some bracelets if you like (we’ll just give them to you), and when you “sell” them, you can send the money to the Red Cross directly. We have about 300 and can get more when we head back to Tokyo. Every little bit helps!

  • AJ says:

    What a good idea gving out the bracelets. It does seem like the right thing to do to visit Disney. I taught in Florida near Disney most of my students parents worked at Disney… they really are a large employer, so from that stand point alone it is a really good thing that they reopened.

  • This is so awesome. I hope I can do something like this when I have a family. I recently returned from Peace Corps–a great eye opening, life changing experience. Just read article about you in UU World. “but I think that perhaps our everyday attitude in simple interactions is the foundation, and the rest grows out of that.” Just this evening I was talking with someone who told he wanted to bring world peace. I asked him what he himself is doing in relationships with other people. This is important to me. You inspire me. Thank you. Matt

  • Teresa Teresa says:

    Matt, I would love to be able to do a couple of years with the Peace Corp! …maybe when all of the kids are in college. YOU are the real inspiration. Where did you go? I’m in San Francisco for two weeks before heading to Belize and guess what the sermon was about at the UU church? …how everything stems from your little interactions with people and your attitude. It’s the biggest lesson I’ve learned on the trip. Seeing the way many people live their lives, with love and happiness, whether in a shack in Peru, or a one room home in a slum in Calcutta is inspiring and life changing.

  • Teresa Teresa says:

    Exactly, AJ! People in Japan really seem to want to get back to life as usual as quickly as they can. After such trauma, they need that. It was wonderful to see little children jumping around and having the time of their lives at Disney. It reminds everyone that life goes on. Once Japan is able to deal with the nuclear problems, rebuilding tourism is going to be as much of a challenge as reconstruction. Have a great time at General Assembly, AJ.

  • Staci says:

    This is a wonderful idea. Stumbled upon this site looking for Tokyo Disney info. Is it still possible to donate? Are there any bracelets left? Thanks!!

  • Teresa Teresa says:

    Absolutely, Staci! You can donate via the website and we’ll send you some bracelets. We still have some left. Enjoy Tokyo Disney if you get the chance to go!

  • Staci says:

    Thank you so much! I’m sorry to take so long to do this, but I just donated $10. If you still have some bracelets left, that’s wonderful, but if not, I’m just happy to help Japan. I adore the country & people even though I’ve yet to visit. Soon, I hope!

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