No doubt you’ve seen the heart wrenching video and photos of the devastation left by the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan days ago. Families have lost loved ones, homes, possessions and even livelihoods.
ADRA’s Japan office began in 1985 primarily as a funding office for developing nations. Due to the numerous natural disasters that face this great nation, ADRA Japan already had an emergency response plan formulated, tested, and in place. This pre-planning allowed our workers to rush to the affected areas and begin working.
Coordinating with local governmental authorities, ADRA has been appointed to support an evacuation enter in Wakabayashi ward located in Sendai City of the Miyagi prefecture. This center is currently housing approximately 1,300 displaced persons of which 350 are receiving 24-hour care. ADRA immediately dispatched a two-ton truck loaded with food and non-food items, fuel and cooking gas, which arrived at the evacuation center in Sendai in the early morning hours on Thursday.
During the daylight hours, many of the evacuees return to where their homes used to be to begin the long process of cleaning up and rebuilding.
“My house is flooded under about 1.6 meters (5 feet) of debris. I am not sure where to begin cleaning, but I’ve started little by little,” commented a woman at the center.
Nearly one week has passed since the quake and resulting tsunami devastated the Northern prefecture of Miyagi. The National Police are now estimating more than 5,000 people are dead and nearly 10,000 are still missing. The cold weather, scarcity of food and drinkable water, and the ever-changing fear of nuclear fallout and radiation threat weigh heavily on the minds of survivors making everyday survival that much more challenging.