Disaster Shelter Shizugawa Elementary school

On the evening of March 28, I moved from the Minami Sanriku Bay Side arena disaster refuge center to the nearby Shizugawa elementary school disaster refuge center. From today together with 3 other volunteers, I stayed at the refuge center and helped with the organization of supplies, the serving of meals, and the clean up. I wanted to be there from morning to evening so that I could be a help whenever I was needed. Because the size, appearance, and needs of each refuge center is completely different from each other and sometimes changes, I cannot describe each one briefly. Supplies sent to this area are now relatively sufficient for the needs, but water, electricity and gas is still stopped. In the day time solar panels are used to power the television set for the shelter, and at night a gas powered generator is used. The photo shows the food and miso soup we ate which was extra beyond the needs of the disaster victims. It is pitch dark after sunset. I slept at the gymnasium with 3 other volunteers that I got to know through the Mixi social web site. I was lent a few blankets and was thankful to be able to sleep warmly.

Food served to the disaster victims of the Japan 2011 earthquake

Food served to the disaster victims of the Japan 2011 earthquake.

Takeshi Kondo
Leap High 28 communications director

Translated from Japanese by James Arendt of Begley Productions.

Emergency Supplies Minami Sanriku

The photograph taken on March 26 shows volunteers unloading supplies at the bay side arena shelter of Minami Sanriku in bucket brigade fashion during a snowfall mixed with hail. From today, March 28, together with two other volunteers, I will spend a few days at the bay side arena to continue doing what I can do to help the disaster victims. Fifty doctors from Israel have come to Minami Sanriku town to treat the disaster victims. I am glad to be here to help out even as their interpreter. Yesterday I attended a worship service at the Sendai Hosanna church near the YMCA where I stayed. Due to danger of falling debris from the aftershocks, rather than hold worship service in the main chapel, 30 people packed into a small room in the church. The church will gratefully receive yet 10 more volunteers tomorrow. I was also thankful yesterday afternoon when a person took me to a hot spring. It was great to take a hot bath after 6 cold nights. Another week begins.

Unloading emergency supplies in the snow at Minami Sanriku town in bucket brigade fashion

Unloading emergency supplies in the snow at Minami Sanriku town in bucket brigade fashion

Takeshi Kondo
Leap High 28 communications director

Translated from Japanese by James Arendt of Begley Productions.

Prayer in front of the Minami Sanriku town hall

I drove 3 hours from Sendai to the town of Minami Sanriku. About 40% of this town of 17,000 people were either killed or whose whereabouts are still unknown. Seventy percent of the houses were destroyed. Together with other volunteers, I registered at the bay side area where 1300 disaster victims are evacuated to help carry supplies. Fifty volunteers took three hours in bucket brigade fashion to unload three ten ton trucks full of supplies. The photograph shows the destroyed town hall in the midst of the destroyed area. Though it was cold, I got off the vehicle I was riding to join together with five other Christians to pray for the rebuilding of the town. We also prayed that the rebuilt town might also contain a Christian church, as formerly, there was none.

The remains of the town hall amidst other destruction.

The remains of the town hall amidst other destruction.

Takashi Kondo
NPO Leap High 28 Communications director

Translated from Japanese by James Arendt of Begley Productions.