A Whisper of Silence to Beloved Japan

By Denis Plamondon

The March 11th 2011 disaster, following a massive earthquake and tsunami, destroyed away many lives and disrupted the existence of millions more. This devastation has triggered sorrow in our hearts and found its way to the core of our souls. We are astonished by the inconceivable images reported in the media, feel powerless and weighed down by profound sadness. It is with great concern that we offer our sympathy to all victims of this terrible tragedy. For those who perished, may you rest in peace. We keep silence in our hearts, you will be remembered.

This brief article focuses on Matsushima (松島), a town located 30 minutes from Sendai, famous for its natural beauty. The 9.0 earthquake’s epicenter was located nearby. We still don’t know the state of this marvel of nature, but we hope this icon of Japan will be revitalized and attain a new serenity. Visitors to Matsushima often take a boat tour to travel through an archipelago of 260 tiny islets just of the coast. One of the islets bears an image, carved by mother nature, with a striking resemblance to the map of Japan. We cannot help but wonder if recent events have altered this signature and transformed the social fabric of the Japanese people, but we can be sure that now more than ever, nature has reached a new level of deference.

Did the physical and spiritual map of Japan changed?

Now it is time to help. The Japanese need immediate attention, especially in northern part of the country. Please refer to the links down below to see what you can do.

How to Help:

Relief efforts:

Hope International Development Agency-Japan: A reliable organization involved in many relief efforts around the globe. They have personnel on the ground in Northern Japan to bring immediate relief to the victims.

Doctors Without Borders: Present on the ground moments after the catastrophe, their intervention is crucial to saving lives and treating injuries; always an excellent idea to donate to this organization.

Japanese Red Cross Society: You can be sure that the Red Cross will do exactly what they are all about, supplying well-needed medicine.

The Shelter Box: Clear destination for your help.

Five ways you can help Japan: A few more options to choose from.

You can also turn towards artists’ special funds:

Lady Gaga Japan Earthquake Relief Wristband: The bracelet costs only $5, but it will make a difference.

Local concerts, fashion shows, special events have been organized all over the world. Keep your eyes and heart wide open.

Check locally your telephone company for donations. For example in Canada, Rogers, Fido and other wireless customers can text ASIA to 30333 to donate $5 to earthquake relief efforts. 100% of all donations will go to the Canadian Red Cross Japan Earthquake/Asia-Pacific Tsunami fund.

Pets and Animals Rescue:

Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support (JEARS):

Animal Refuge Kansai:

World Vets – Japan Animal Disaster Relief: