Dear visitor, if you know the answer to this question, please post it. Thank you!

Note that this thread has not been updated in a long time, and its content might not be up-to-date anymore.

Volunteers for post-disaster cleanup 2011/3/14 18:36
Not sure where else to start asking about this...

I'm fully aware that going to Tohoku now would just cause more problems for the authorities and survivors there, but I'm very keen to head there as soon as the state of emergency has lifted in order to help the people of Tohoku to clean up and get things up and running again.

Even that may cause more problems for the people around me because I have no real building qualifications or major construction skills but I'm physically fit, hard-working and have a good knowledge of everyday Japanese.

Tohoku is also my favourite region of Japan. Fukushima-ken in particular holds a huge place in my heart because of all the treasured memories of the time I've spent there.

So my question is pretty general, but I'm just wondering if there are any organisations I can contact regarding volunteering in Tohoku or if there are resources (in Japanese or English) I can use to start the ball rolling.

Hopefully it goes without saying that I plan to cover all travel costs myself.

Many thanks for any advice.


by Hairyneville  

... 2011/3/14 20:54

If you read Japanese, probably best to check this site regularly for updates on activities and needs.

As time passes and rescue & recovery operations wind down, the need for the type of volunteer work you are asking about will become more evident and more organized.
by kyototrans rate this post as useful

Thanks for the link 2011/3/15 03:54
Many thanks for the link. For some reason the direct link didn't work for me. If anyone else has the same problem then you can just search for Yahooボランティア to access the page that way.

I'll keep checking the site and would welcome any more advice that anyone may have.

Thanks again!
by Hairyneville rate this post as useful

Urayasu needs folks in Chiba 2011/3/15 21:24
Just some info to tell people here that, due to the Tohoku-Kanto Great Earthquake, Urayasu is already in need of help from those who are in Chiba Prefecture. They would probably appreciate those who can read Japanese.
by Uco (guest) rate this post as useful

All Hands 2011/3/25 08:17
I am currently following the All Hands website.

They're currently looking for a base to potentially start a volunteer project some time in the near future.
by Olve rate this post as useful

... 2011/3/25 12:44
NGO Peace Boat in Tokyo is looking for volunteer workers to go to Ishinomaki Cityy for a week (staying in your sleeping bag, tent, etc., and you need to bring your food for a week).

This would be suited for people who are already in Tokyo (their trucks only start from Tokyo) with at least some Japanese language capability. The volunteer workers will travel to Ishinomaki, help deliver supplies to the area, then use bicycles to deliver goods to evacuation centers, and cook meals for those in evacuation centers. For mental health reasons (from the experience of volunteer workers who have already been there) the max. time they allow anyone to work is one week.

They are holding orientation sessions on Wed. and Sat. evenings in Tokyo, and you need to book to attend (and attendance to one of those sessions is mandatory for those who want to go to Ishinomaki City to help), but they seem to be pretty much booked out.
by AK rate this post as useful

Please help where you can! 2011/3/25 17:51
Many thanks for all of the responses to my enquiry.

I would encourage anyone already in Japan who is reading this thread to help wherever you can.

I'm currently in the UK, constantly assessing the situation in various parts of Tohoku. I still feel that I'd be more of a problem than any help if I came to Japan now because I lack even basic first aid skills. I have warehousing and stores experience as well as many years' experience of distribution and logistics after nine years working for the UK's Royal Mail. I have a decent range of practical skills that could be put to good use in the right circumstances (distribution centres, on distribution convoys and so forth). But beyond that I can only offer a strong back and a willingness to work hard.

I hope anyone reading this who has more useful skills than I have will take a leap of faith and volunteer, even for a week as described in AK's post.

Many thanks again, everyone.

by Hairyneville rate this post as useful

Volunteering 2011/3/26 00:09
I am in Tokyo at the moment and was wanting to volunteer in an evacuation centre? is this possible and where is one in tokyo area?
by 1602 (guest) rate this post as useful

Evacuation centres 2011/3/26 03:28
I don't know exact details, but I think there's an evacuation centre at the Super Stadium in Saitama-ken. The evacuees are from one of the hardest-hit areas of Fukushima. I've also heard about evacuees being housed at the Budokan in Tokyo as well as a couple of other places, the names of which I can't remember.

I'm sorry for my poor information! I read about all of these things in various online news articles (mostly in Japanese) but I can't remember which sites they were on!

I seem to remember that the Anglican Church in Japan (Nippon Seikokai - 日本聖公会) is organising volunteers. Maybe you can contact them.

Sorry again for the poor quality of my information...

Good luck with finding somewhere to volunteer and thank you for your kindness in trying so hard to help!

by Hairyneville rate this post as useful

... 2011/3/26 13:20
To 1602 and Hairyneville,

The closest evacuation center from Tokyo (that I currently know is in operation) is Saitama Super Arena. But as you can imagine, there are many people who want to help as volunteers, and it looks like they have had about 4,000 people offering help, while on a daily basis they need only about 100 people to help on site. So they stopped accepting further volunteers for this site. They open at 8:30, and people simply line up, and as soon as 100 is reached, they stop taking in any more help.

Also they stopped accepting supplies (people have been bringing in a lot of supplies).

It might be better to ask at your own city/ward hall if they have anything in your immediate neighborhood.
by AK rate this post as useful

Helping Hands' Project Tohoku 2011/4/16 17:44
Helping Hands are now accepting applications for volunteers to help clean up debris and fix up houses for an initial period of two months in Ofunato, Iwate-ken. The situation is ongoing so the work may change as time goes on.

Details and an application form can be found here...
by Hairyneville rate this post as useful

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