ShelterBox Response to Japan and Other Disasters

by ShelterBox USA
Jul 5, 2011

ShelterBox Response to Japan and Other Disasters


THANK YOU for helping ShelterBox provide shelter, warmth and dignity to survivors of natural and other disasters around the world!

Since March, the weather has continued to wreak havoc on families across the globe, from the massive earthquake and tsunami in Japan to the storms and tornadoes in our own nation’s southern states. Because of the generosity of our supporters, ShelterBox has been able to deliver shelter and life-saving equipment to survivors of these and other disasters all over the world.

Your support has helped ShelterBox deliver more than 3,552 ShelterBoxes since March, following the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan, widespread flooding in Colombia and Bolivia, cyclone in Madagascar and tornadoes in the U.S. Each ShelterBox contains a high quality tent, cook-stove, water purification system, pots and pans, utensils, a children’s activity kit and other essential tools to help a family rebuild their lives independently and with dignity following a disaster. Volunteer ShelterBox Response Team (SRT) members deliver the kits to families who need them most. Please see below for a report on our latest deployments.

U.S. South (

Most recently, families in the tornado-raged cities of Etna and Denning, Arkansas received aid after tornadoes and storms struck the nation’s South, including in Tuscaloosa and Joplin, where needs were being met locally. With the help of local authorities, Rotarians and Scouts, ShelterBox sent 48 ShelterBoxes for families in need. 

In a letter to ShelterBox, Arkansas State Rep. Leslee Post said, “We will be forever indebted to the ShelterBox Response Team members and ShelterBox for coming to our need during our disaster.”

Colombia (

Heavy rains resulted in widespread flooding throughout Colombia, affecting an estimated three million people. ShelterBox responded to the immense need for shelter throughout the country and delivered 1,244 ShelterBoxes to families in need.

Japan (

ShelterBox arrived on the ground less than 24 hours after the 9.0 magnitude earthquake hit Japan and triggered a tsunami that claimed thousands of lives, destroyed hundreds of thousands of homes and wiped out swathes of Japan’s north east coast.  

ShelterBox Response Teams (SRTs) from around the world worked closely with Japanese authorities and Rotary districts to distribute aid to families in the Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima Prefectures.

In the town of Ofunato, in the Iwate Prefecture, families expressed their gratitude.

"When we found out the wave had taken our house, we knew we had nowhere to stay," said 17 year-old Kinno Masako. “Our house, and everything in it, is gone. We were staying with lots of other families but now we are lucky to have a ShelterBox tent so we have a place to stay together."

More than 10,000 winter gloves, scarves and hats were sent, and 1,680 ShelterBoxes have been distributed to the people of Japan as they began to rebuild their lives.

Bolivia ( Weeks of heavy rain in the South American country of Bolivia triggered widespread flooding and landslides that killed 50 people and left thousands homeless. A national emergency was declared. ShelterBox Response Teams delivered 200 ShelterBoxes to families who lost their homes.

Madagascar ( In February, Cyclone Bingiza struck Madagascar causing a landfall that killed 16 people and destroyed 6,000 homes. ShelterBox delivered 400 ShelterBoxes and four "classrooms in a Box" (special boxes containing children's activity kits). 

ShelterBox’s vision is to help 50,000 families who lose everything in a disaster every year. 


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Organization Information

ShelterBox USA

Location: Lakewood Ranch, FL - USA
Website: http:/​/​
ShelterBox USA
Project Leader:
Tiffany Stephenson
Director of Communications
Lakewood Ranch, Florida United States

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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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