Japan Earthquake Disaster Recovery

by Peace Winds America Vetted since 2011 Top Ranked Effective Nonprofit Site Visit Verified
Children participate in a snack-making activity
Children participate in a snack-making activity

Over two years have passed since Kumamoto earthquake survivors moved into temporary housing.  Families are doing their best to make a new life for themselves.  As time passes, it becomes difficult for families to remain hopeful that they will leave.  This burden of uncertainty takes its toll, especially on the elderly.  With the often dreary months during fall and winter, this frame of mind can lead to isolation and depression, making it difficult for people to seek support and social engagement.

Peace Winds is partnering with local NGOs to improve engagement by hosting community events and social activities for residents. Plans are underway for get-togethers for Culture Day (November 3), Labor Thanksgiving Day (November 23), the Emperor's Birthday (December 23-24), Christmas (December 25), New Year (January 1-3), Coming of Age Day (January 8), National Foundation Day (February 11-12), and Girls’ Festival (March 3).  The local township leaders urge community involvement while they continue to assess and meet the needs of the residents.  Township leadership during these difficult fall and winter months is critical and welcomed by the residents, especially children and the elderly.

Peace Winds’ priority is to encourage bonds among community members, enhancing solidarity and support of each other.  As our Kumamoto project draws down, Peace Winds ensures the township leaders have the training and tools/supplies to keep their communities engaged, to provide counseling, and to encourage and reassure families.

We are most grateful for your kind support to these families.  Our successful projects have helped Kumamoto families toward recovery and resilience.

Our sincerest gratitude -- arigatou gozaimashita!

A township leader (right) discusses activities
A township leader (right) discusses activities

Two years have passed since the 2016 Kumamoto earthquakes.  Yet 1500 families continue to live in the temporary housing complexes established after the earthquakes struck.

Peace Winds has been assisting these families with accommodations (first tents, then module prefabs, and now temporary housing).  Peace Winds continues to support events and activities, leadership training, pet care, and other resources to build a strong sense of community among the residents.  In May 2018, we met with leaders and residents at the Mashiki housing complexes.  The 24 township leaders are diligently working to maintain community bonds and improve life for their fellow residents.  One could easily see and hear the positive and inspiring results due to your generous donations.

With your support, we have had two years of successful projects and have built strong connections within the housing communities.  Your generosity has provided an opportunity for Peace Winds to begin transitioning to new projects to aid families (particularly children, elderly, and pet owners).

We will continue supporting the 1,500 families living in the Mashiki complexes and provide updates.  Together we can ensure Kumamoto families continue making strides in their recovery.

Our sincerest gratitude -- arigatou gozaimashita!

Community play field and gazebo funded by PWA
Community play field and gazebo funded by PWA
A building brought down by the earthquakes
A building brought down by the earthquakes

Two years ago (April 14 and 16, 2016) two massive earthquakes shook Kumamoto, damaging and destroying thousands of buildings, forcing over 100,000 people to the emergency shelters.

Many families have not returned home since the earthquakes struck. Peace Winds continues to assist 1,500 families living in temporary housing in Mashiki, one of the hardest hit areas. These residents do not know when they can leave.

Peace Winds’ goal remains to strengthen individual, family, and community resilience. Peace Winds hosts weekly events and activities to encourage community engagement and provides mental health counseling. These resources and activities ease the burden of recovery and bring hope to residents, especially important for the elderly. Peace Winds continues to aid families with pets by funding shelters and visits.

We will continue to help evacuees in temporary housing. This two year anniversary is a difficult time for survivors as they reflect on how much their lives have changed. With your help we can continue supporting the 1,500 families.

Please consider continuing your support to the families in Kumamoto.

Our sincerest gratitude -- arigatou gozaimashita!

Residents participating in a community event
Residents participating in a community event
Residents walk their dogs in pet-friendly housing
Residents walk their dogs in pet-friendly housing

This April marks the two year anniversary of the 2016 Kumamoto Earthquakes. Many survivors and their pets call the temporary housing communities home, with no idea when they will be able to leave.

Peace Winds has built strong support activities within these temporary housing communities by hosting events and activities for residents. Peace Winds continues to build a sense of community between neighbors by providing activities and resources to residents, including training local township leaders to assist with concerns and problems.

For the township leaders at temporary housing complexes, Peace Winds organized a trip to Niigata Prefecture, where devastating earthquakes and disasters destroyed infrastructure and communities in 2004 and 2007. The leaders visited public developments, housing complexes, community centers, and disaster museums. This January study trip enabled township leaders to see the effective support programs other communities implemented for their residents following disaster, and to practice these techniques in their own temporary housing communities.

Peace Winds continues to support residents with pets. Peace Winds provides pet-friendly housing and shelters, allowing residents to keep their pets. Peace Winds has used recent funding to expand and improve the pet shelters, and to arrange frequent visits between owners and their pets. Through your support, Peace Winds has also hired additional staff and veterinarians to ensure the animals receive the attention and care they need.

Peace Winds--through building community, providing opportunities for engagement, training township leaders, and supporting pet owners--is aiding the Kumamoto survivors in their recovery.

We are only $3,771 dollars short of our goal; will you help us reach our goal and support the residents and pets in Kumamoto?

Our sincerest gratitude -- arigatou gozaimashita!

Two dogs enjoy the new expanded shelter
Two dogs enjoy the new expanded shelter
Residents participate in activities
Residents participate in activities

The earthquakes struck Kumamoto in April 2016.  Yet over 1,500 households are still living in temporary housing communities.  It is uncertain when families can leave their temporary homes, which causes undue stress and burden. This uncertainty can lead to isolation and withdrawal, especially for the elderly. 

Working with local Township Leaders, local NGOs, and volunteers, Peace Winds is providing a variety of community building and engagement activities at 18 community centers throughout the housing complexes. These events are a powerful tool in helping build communities and encouraging neighbors to care for one another. Using your generous donations, PWA has continued to help these housing communities by continuing to provide a variety of activities, including cooking, arts and crafts, massages, seasonal festivals, and mental health workshops to help residents cope with living long-term in temporary housing.

Peace Winds is continuing to provide support to pets and pet owners. Peace Winds provided funds to two pet shelters, supporting expanded facilities, improved living conditions, and increased staff and veterinary care. Peace Winds has facilitated visits between owners and their dogs over the last several months and hopes to continue providing this assistance. 

NOTE: GlobalGiving is currently matching ALL donations to Kumamoto Recovery. YES--dollar for dollar, up to $33,000! Can you help us do more for the leaders, volunteers, and the residents and their pets?      

Our sincerest gratitude -- arigatou gozaimashita!


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Organization Information

Peace Winds America

Location: Seattle, WA - USA
Website: http:/​/​peacewindsamerica.org/​
Project Leader:
Rumi Naito
Seattle, WA - Washington United States
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