Japan earthquake and tsunami: one month on

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One month after Japan was devastated by a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and ensuing tsunami killed over 25,000 people, followed by a precarious nuclear situation Islamic Relief is continuing to get vital help to the Japanese people. Over 150,000 people are homeless and living in shelters, and radiation concerns remain.

Communities along hundreds of miles of the coastline were flattened and the Japanese government estimate the cost as high as $310 billion in damage. 210,000 people are still without running water and 158,000 are without electricity.

Around 80,000 people living within a 12 mile radius of the nuclear plant have been ordered to evacuate the area, as workers inside the plant attempt to remove contaminated water and cool the reactor. Fears have grown as to the safety of food as contamination leaking into the ocean and soil in the area.

Islamic Relief has been working with a partner organisation in Japan to deliver vital supplies and help in the relief effort. Japan Emergency NGO (JEN) on the ground are working to remove sludge from evacuation centres and homes, which is helping the process of getting homes fit for habitation and make the centres safer. Soup kitchens have been set up at the evacuation centres and people affected by the earthquake provided with psychological support. Teams on the ground have been visiting homes and distributed supplies to those who need it most.

As well as all this teams on the ground we have also distributed food, hygiene kits, and basic relief items, and further set up camps in Ishinomaki.

Teams have expanded their assistance to remote areas such as Minamisanriku, Higashimatsushima, Onagawa and Ishinomaki which have received the least external support due to remote locations.

JEN’s activities have reached approximately 150,000 people so far in the period between the end of March and the first week of April.

Planned future activities include a temporary shelter project that will house people until the government prepares permanent houses for them, encouraging local waste management companies to participate in the rubble clean up so the local economy can be revived, connecting local shop owners to the farmers allowing for nutrition and livelihood improvement, supporting local vegetable shop owners to reinstall their destroyed shops allowing them to trade once again.

You can help Islamic Relief continue to support the people of Japan as they tackle the enormous challenge of rebuilding lives and communities. Please donate today.