Monday, March 14, 2011

good deeds ~ relief efforts for japan

i had a different good deeds post all ready to go, but after the devastating tsunami i couldn't think of anything more important right now than encouraging all of us to help our friends in japan.  

i'm sure you've all seen the incredibly heart-wrenching footage and photos of the devastation - of freighter ships sitting in the middle of neighborhoods which are now empty of houses, of cars piled upon cars, and houses piled upon houses.  i'm sure you've been reading about the nuclear crises and radiation exposure, of rescue efforts in the freezing cold, of a rising death toll, of entire cities and their citizens missing, and now, volcano activity in the southern part of the country.
{photos from sfgate}

i keep thinking, it could just as easily be us.  earthquakes and tsunamis always hit close to home for me since i live in california.  when the earthquake struck haiti, it was easy to tell myself a lot of the destruction was due to insufficient building codes, which was true.  but the destruction in japan just shows that it doesn't matter how developed your country is, or how prepared you are for giant earthquakes and tsunamis.  anything can happen, at any moment.  i mean, if an earthquake in the pacific can shift the entire country of japan 12 feet to the east and change the tilt of the earth's axis, what difference do building codes make?  well okay, building codes, tsunami sirens, and evacuation
routes make a HUGE difference, and i'm so glad we have them!  but my point is, natural disasters
are not something we can win a war against or totally avoid with protocols.  

so with that in mind, i have two ideas for good deeds today:

1. while you are blessed with this life, love and live as best as you can.
2.  please find some way to help the people of japan as they deal with
such a tremendous {no word feels strong enough here} loss.

- you can donate $10 to the red cross by texting REDCROSS to 90999.
- work with your school, church, or other organization to combine efforts for a fundraiser. 
- in the coming weeks, keep an eye out for other ways you may be able to help {donating clothing,
volunteering to do medical or labor work, etc.}.
- check out other organizations taking donations on msnbc's "how to help" page.

we are all connected in this world, and i think it's tremendously important to support one another in these tragic times.