• Part of proceeds has been disbursed as emergency relief for basic necessities while remaining will be spent to aid early recovery
Singapore, 13 May 2011 – The Singapore Red Cross (SRC) has received more than S$30 million in response to its public appeal which ended on 30 April 2011, to assist survivors of the massive earthquake and tsunami that struck the Tohoku region on 11 March 2011.
Closed to $1.5m has been disbursed as emergency relief, providing basic necessities to Japanese families placed in temporary housing, while the remaining funds will aid early recovery. The plans include:
Construction / Rehabilitation of a night-time medical centre which was partially destroyed by the tsunami;
Purchase and distribution of medical/nursing beds to the affected municipalities;
Procurement of vehicles for social welfare institutions, to facilitate the transport for the elderly and the disabled, and the provision of nursing care support for these vulnerable groups.
“Our team of two, comprising our Director of Operations and Head of International Services, and Director of Special Duties, have returned from their visit to the affected area organised by the Japanese Red Cross Society (JRCS). It is clear that the tsunami had caused widespread damage and destroyed housing and large elements of the social ifrastructure like, schools, clinics, nursing homes, transportation systems, and hospitals.
The primary task now is to reactivate some of these infrastructure and restore the delivery of these services on an urgent basis,” said Mr Christopher Chua, Secretary General of the Singapore Red Cross.
Besides working with the JRCS, the SRC is in close consultation with the Singapore Embassy in Tokyo to identify other needs in the affected communities that the SRC can help meet with the funds raised.
Mr Lim, SRC Director of Operations and Head of International Services elaborated, “We are currently in discussions with the JRCS on the details of our contribution. Meanwhile the JRCS will have to work out all the details with the various municipalities which would be the recipients. We will be very focused to ensure that the funds are used in the most effective and impactful way.”
Mr Benjamin Jeyaraj William (Director, Special Duties) and Mr Lim Theam Poh (Director, Operations & Head, International Services) of the Singapore Red Cross were in Tokyo this week to attend the Partnership Meeting on the Great East Japan Earthquake organised by the Japanese Red Cross Society (JRCS). In addition to consultations in Tokyo at which the JRCS provided operational updates, the SRC team also visited the affected regions in Iwate and Miyagi Prefectures, and interacted with families at the evacuation centres and temporary housing. The team also visited a school and presented folded paper cranes and greeting cards which had been prepared by the people from Singapore to the Japanese students. [Photos available at www.facebook.com/sgredcross]
Singapore Red Cross’ humanitarian aid to Japan (to date)
• Emergency Relief – Cash contribution of US$1 million
• Relief Supplies – Two tranches of relief supplies comprising bottles of water, collapsible water containers, blankets and mattresses
• Restoring Family Links (RFL) – 25 families successfully matched through the RFL tracing service, that assists Singaporeans and Japanese in locating their immediate family members who may have been affected by the disaster and whom they have difficulty in contacting.
Mr Tadateru Konoe, President of the JRCS (and President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies) praised the Singapore Red Cross for its timely and proactive humanitarian assistance. He also conveyed his gratitude to the Singapore Red Cross and the people of Singapore.
For more information on the ongoing relief efforts in Japan, please visit http://www.ifrc.org/what-we-do/disaster-management/responding/ongoing-operations/japan-earthquake/
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