Monday, March 21, 2011


The photographs are heartbreaking.

and yet rebuilding attempts have almost started immediately... although finding, recovering, healing, feeding, and quenching the thirst of people takes precedence. Human beings are amazingly resilient.  Our continuing existence is evidence of that resiliency considering all we have been through... and all we do to each other.

And yet we go on... because we must.  And when we can... we reach out to help each other. There are so many ways to help... the Red Cross is definitely one way and I was watching CNN this morning and a brief story came on about another organization called ShelterBox.  

Shelterbox was founded by Tom Henderson, a Rotarian and former Royal Navy Search and Rescue Diver.  He noted that immediately after disasters people were given assistance with food and medical supplies but not really any assistance with proper shelter and basic supplies to help them rebuild their lives.  So in 2000 this group was organized and the Rotary Club of Helston-Lizard in Cornwall adopted it as its millennium project.   Since then the site reports it has become the largest Rotary club project in the world, with affiliates in countries across the globe. 

Inside a large green box is a survival kit of sorts... but the ultimate survival kit.  This box contains a tent that will fit up to 10 people as well as many items to help an extended family survive for several months.  Items are customized as much as possible for the region into which they will be sent and includes tools, a stove (multi-fuel I believe), a basic water purification system etc., and even small items for children.  The group mobilizes immediately after any major disaster of any kind and then gets as many boxes as possible to people who need them.  Japan has put in a request.  But what is also unique about this service is that they don't just drop the boxes off... they actually send ShelterBox Response Teams to help with set up of items in these boxes so that these items will be immediately put to their best use.

This is a very informative site if anyone is looking for ways to help disaster victims in any part of the world.  ShelterBox is a Global Rotary Club Project.

This site also has continuing information about the boxes that were sent into Haiti and many other areas.  There is also information about them gearing up for deployment into Japan as well as a link  which shows you how to donate... any amount really, and right now according to their home page  in  note in the rotating header photos (3rd photo) they have a texting/donation system set up where  you can send a text that will donate $10 towards funding these boxes.  Check it out if you are interested.

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