Japanese American Citizens League, Direct Relief International Join Together for Japan Relief

The Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) and Direct Relief International today announced a collaboration to support relief and recovery efforts in Japan – the formation of the Japan Relief and Recovery Fund.

JACL, which was founded in 1929, is the oldest and largest Asian American civil rights organization in the United States and also operates one of its 112 chapters in Tokyo. Direct Relief International, established in 1948, is a privately funded humanitarian organization with decades-long experience in emergency response and humanitarian health assistance worldwide.

100% of funds donated to the Japan Relief and Recovery Fund, which will be managed by Direct Relief International, will be dedicated exclusively to relief and recovery efforts in Japan.

The organizations joined together in the face of a still unfolding crisis in Japan to ensure that contributions to assist Japan are used in the most productive, efficient manner possible.

Floyd Mori, National Executive Director of the JACL, said, “We are happy for this opportunity to partner with a superior organization such as Direct Relief, whose record of efficiency is second to none. Many of our collaborative human and civil rights organizations will be supporting this relief effort.  We are happy to provide an avenue for funds that will go directly to help stricken victims of the disaster, many who are friends and family to our membership.”

“Direct Relief’s long experience in emergency response and efficient, transparent use of donated funds and JACL’s extensive network both within the United States and in Japan will ensure that resources made available for this crisis are well managed, well spent, and used in the most productive manner possible,” said Direct Relief CEO and President Thomas Tighe.

Direct Relief also today committed an initial $600,000 in cash to the effort and offered $15 million in medical inventory if needed to assist with trauma care and health conditions related to injuries and exposure as hundreds of thousands of people have been dislocated.

Direct Relief’s Director of International Programs and Emergency Response, Brett Williams, is travelling to Japan this week. Williams has led the organization’s extensive assistance to Haiti, where Direct Relief has been the largest provider of medical material aid (800 tons worth $60 million) since the Haiti quake in January 2010.

Mori and Tighe also issued the following joint statement:

“This is a massive, complex emergency in Japan that we recognize is beyond the capacity of any one organization to address fully, so we believe this initial collaboration between our two longstanding, established organizations makes great sense, and we encourage other people, businesses, and organizations to join together to support people in Japan in this most difficult time.”


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