Two weeks after a massive earthquake and tsunami caused unprecedented damage to northeastern Japan, donations from people across the country and around the world to support reconstruction efforts are soaring at the fastest pace ever.
The Japanese Red Cross Society collected a total of 22.9 billion yen in donations from some 574,500 individuals and companies over nine days through Tuesday.
At the time of the 1995 Hanshin Awaji quake that devastated western Japan’s Kobe area, the Red Cross collected some 16.4 billion yen in the two weeks after it started accepting donations. This time, donations reached the same level in only five days.
“This is the fastest pace for donations in the history of the Japanese Red Cross,” said an official of the group. “As support activities are expected to be prolonged, we would appreciate donations continuing,” the official said.