Earthquake and Tsunami Operations Update n° 8
Period covered by this Operations Update: 27 April 2012 - 9 August 2012
Operations Update No. 8 captures the activities of the Japanese Red Cross Society (JRCS) in response to the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami (GEJET) over the past three months.
A new project, summer camp for the children from the three affected prefectures, was launched on 21 July. A series of three night/four day camps will be held in eleven separate sessions throughout the summer with a total participation of 3,600 children ranging in age from fifth year in elementary school to the final year in junior high school. A total of 1,000 guardians including JRCS staff, volunteers, private entity partners, nurses and clinical psychotherapist and the travel agency will also participate. The venue is in a resort in Hokkaido; a popular place for summer getaways. The camp is intended to create an environment for the children from the most affected prefectures to be able to feel at ease in nature. Also, the camp aims to be a catalyst for the children to become future leaders of the regions through various experiences and interactions with others. The children will also have the opportunity to learn where the international donations for their recovery are coming from through orienteering activities where they will be quizzed on the flags of the countries and regions from which the donations were sent.
An indoor play zone, Smile Park, operated in February made a comeback for a longer term this summer, after a strong request from the Fukushima community. The facility allows the children toplay with full energy as if they were playing outside, which many have been avoiding due to the concerns over exposure to radiation. The lack of physical exercise has been making the children uneasy and keeping them up at nights which have been creating much concerns for the parents.
The facility is mobile and will be set up in four cities in Fukushima from July until the end of August.
A total of 30,000 participants are expected. JRCS continues to support the people of Fukushima who live under much anxiety over radiation exposure. Based on the JRCS support plan, the projects come in a mix of both hardware and software support. In Fukushima, the distribution of Whole Body Counters and food radiation measurement equipment are provided as tangible support items, while providing an open environment for the people of Fukushima to feel at ease is another, such as the operation of Smile Park.
JRCS has distributed over 130,000 electric appliance sets (six items each) to the displaced families in temporary housing spread across the nation. This is one of the first recovery projects executed by JRCS which has been in operation for 17 months now. Based on the assessment, the needs are still there, yet currently, the JRCS is in the process of designing the exit plan with the completion planned in September. The final distribution quantity is estimated to be 137,500 sets.
A number of projects initiated by the local chapters are taking place in the three most affected prefectures: Nordic style walking, Red Cross Youth Project, establishment of a Children’s World and“Dream Blossom” project. These projects are developed in close collaboration with the local authorities and play an important role in bringing the community together at a local level.
The recovery support programmes are managed according to the JRCS’s recovery Plan of Action (PoA) with a budget of JPY 58 billion (USD 737 million); the donations from the international community through the sister societies and the partners. The current amount has been increased by JPY 4.9 billion (USD 62 million) since the 12 month report, issued in April. This increase is due to additional donations which continue to come from the international community even in the second year after the earthquake and tsunami on 3.11.
On 18 May 2012, the second Partnership Meeting for GEJET was held with the presence of representatives from 13 Red Cross/Red Crescent National Societies and organizations.
An Independent Auditor's Report and the Income and Expenditure Statement for fiscal year 2011 for the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami was published and forwarded to the donors on 29 June. This specifically reviewed the donations received from the international community allocated to the recovery support activities by JRCS. The reports were reviewed by Ernst & Young ShinNihon LLC in line with international standards.
JPY 356 billion (USD 4.5 billion) was distributed to beneficiaries in 15 prefectures as part of the cash distribution plan. As a designated focal point for cash donations in Japan, JRCS has a mandate to assist disaster survivors through providing cash grants. JRCS will maintain the acceptance of donations by the public for cash grants until 30 September.
In addition to the donation valued at JPY 40 billion (USD 520 million) through provision of 5 million barrels of crude oil, the State of Kuwait made a donation of USD 2 million for recovery support projects activities managed by JRCS.