Japan One Year Later: Looking Ahead

As one of many Salvation Army recovery projects, Ofunato's shopping center is a new hub of trade and commerce after the disaster wiped out this town's commercial district.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the record-breaking earthquake and tsunami that struck the coast of Japan and devastated a nation. Wiping out entire communities along the Pacific coast, the disaster took approximately 16,000 lives throughout its course of destruction. Over the last year and fueled by your support, The Salvation Army has been honored to help the communities of this great nation build again.

Known in Japan as Kyuu-Sei-Gun (Save-World-Army), The Salvation Army has maintained a 117-year presence in the Japan Territory serving the region out of 47 Corps Centers and 12 Outposts. Our global presence, in collaboration with The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO), has enabled The Salvation Army to be an ever-present flame of hope and relief during times of disaster such as this.

Immediately following the earthquake and tsunami, The Salvation Army hit the ground running, providing meals, drinks, shelter, household goods and spiritual and emotional care for survivors. In the last 12 months since the disasters, we served approximately 13,000 meals.

While we reflect on the events of that fateful day and remember the victims, we remain focused on the future’s recovery and development.  In collaboration with Salvation Army leaders in Japan, The Salvation Army continues to assist the affected communities by taking part in various development projects.

Thanks to a generous $9.6 million in donations from American supporters, The Salvation Army has helped facilitate Japan’s recovery through several projects in some of the country’s hardest-hit fishing towns: Ofunato, Onagawa, Kesennuma and Minamisanriky.

It is our hope that by the construction of temporary shopping centers in these fishing villages, trade and commerce will once again flourish and support the recovery of local economies.

Among other notable projects, SAWSO is supporting a meals program in Onagawa to support victims of the disaster. For a broader view of all services provided, click here

Thank you for your support of The Salvation Army which allows us to assist around the globe during times of disaster. If you’d like to assist our continued relief efforts in Japan, please visit our website at www.SalvationArmyUSA.org.