Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Obviously the devastation in Japan is horrible and impacting markets with the Nikkei down over 11%.  The country is smashed and so many folks are simply trying to survive.  I have a friend and client that is in the Navy that is stationed in Japan that I exchanged emails with last night and I am compelled to share some of that with you.  He is on the mainland about 30 miles south of Tokyo on a base.  He is there with his family of 4.

At this time, they are safe and have all the supplies they need including food, water, and strong shelter.  They have electricity and Internet access so they are connected.  In addition, they say that winds are actually blowing towards them from the damaged reactors and therefore they have been stuck in their homes and told not to go outside for the last day.  Winds are predicted to stay on this path for one more day and then reverse to blow out to sea.

I contacted them to see if I could help in some way.  As I received emails from both he and his wife it became clear that they are psychologically impacted in a great way.  After each paragraph, each of them asked that we would pray for the families and people in the North.  They probably didn't do it on purpose, but they each repeated this request throughout the email.  In times like these when you don't have a way to pray, all you can do is pray to Jesus that he would intervene and save as many people as possible.

I've attached a link to pictures here.  They are sobering.

You can find more astonishing pictures here;

The obvious question that some will then raise is what can I do as I sit in comfort in the USA?  Many will give to the Red Cross and other organizations.  Those organizations are already mobilizing and working to begin assisting in the hardest struck areas.  We always hear that much of the budget for the Red Cross and other large organizations are spent on overhead, and I would agree, but guess what, they are often ready at the drop of a hat.

If you wanted to consider another charity, please think about Somebody Cares America.  SCA is an incredible faith based organization that goes to the ends of the earth to assist in disaster assistance.  When the earthquakes hit in Indonesia, SCA was called by the government and asked to coordinate the relief effort.  This is amazing since the group is a Christian organization, AND is staffed with a minimal number of full-time employees.  I use this as an example because it just shows how good they are and how highly respected they are for providing direction and distributing aid throughout the world.  They are unique in that they attempt to find local leaders to funnel aid and money to directly so they can provide assistance and serve the needs of the community.  In the aftermath of hurricane Rita, SCA didn't roll in and try to create their own infrastructure, they found a church that was big enough to become a distribution center and then served the congregation and the pastor so they could minister to the needs of the community there.  This is unique as most help organizations simply look to take control of the situation.  This may work in the very short run, but in the long run, the SCA model creates relationships where the community can be served in greater ways than just passing out ice or food. 

In this complete disaster scenario in Japan, they will seek to provide whatever needs they people have from food, clothing, medical care, and shelter.

You can read more about Somebody Cares America here at http://www.somebodycares.org/ and http://www.somebodycares.org/pages.asp?pageid=64986

The group is mobilizing to enter Japan and needs your help in funding those efforts to help people that are in desperate need.