Supporting Disaster Survivors in Japan

Sachiko Aoki and Kimberly Gould Ashizawa

This report highlights the work of four nonprofit organizations that received $2.8 million in funding from a United Way Worldwide (UWW) grant on behalf of the generosity of Polo Ralph Lauren, as well as from others. The grant program, “Mobilizing the Voluntary Sector to Support the Psychological Wellbeing of Survivors of the Great East Japan Earthquake,” focused on promoting integrated activities to alleviate the psychological burden of survivors in communities in Iwate Prefecture and help them recover from the disaster.

The grant recipients included Kamaishi City Social Welfare Council, Kodomo no Empowerment Iwate, Kurashi no Supporters, and SakuraNet. With multi-year support, these organizations were able to respond to the evolving needs on the ground and carry out innovative, long-term programs in several key areas: (1) support and training of community social worker; (2) providing tutoring and mental health care for children; and (3) training coordinators for volunteerism in the region.

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