Nikon D700 + Nikkor 85mm f/1.4 — 1/200 sec, f/4, ISO 2200 — full exif
My 8-year-old son, Anthony, came into my den while I was watching video of the devastating tsunami that hit up north a few days ago. We're untouched here in Kyoto, but of course he's heard that some bad event happened. I showed him a few of the less graphic videos, and described a bit about the hardship that the survivors must be enduring. He seemed to grasp that it was a bad situation, and wandered off.
Later, we found the note above on my wife's desk. It says:
このお金はぼくのおこづかいです。 いまとうきょうのへんでつなみとじしんがおこっています。 そして、でんきがないばしょがあります。でんきがなかったらだめだからこのお金をわたしてください。
This money is from my allowance. Now, earthquakes and tsunami are happening in the Tokyo area. Therefore, they don't have electricity. Not having electricity must be bad so please send this money.
He placed 112 yen (about $1.25), which I think is all he had left after a recent shopping trip.
Of course, his selflessness chokes me up... but I hesitated whether I should share this on my blog for fear of coming across as the over-proud parent I am.
But on the Japanese news they're reporting that governments in the affected areas are faced with an awkward problem... there are so many people here who want to do something to help in a meaningful way, but when it comes down to it, individuals entering the wasteland to help probably make more trouble than good, so at this point the governments are turning away all but large professional organizations that can look after themselves as well as those they're trying to help. At this point, the best an individual can do is send money to those large organizations.
Yahoo! Japan is credited in the domestic media as having set up the first large-scale acceptance for donations for the earthquake, but outside of Japan one's first thought is likely a chapter of the Red Cross. If you'd like to donate....
- You can donate $10 via your cell-phone bill by texting “REDCROSS” to 90999.
- Google US has an English site for donating to Japanese Red Cross Society.
- If you use Apple iTunes, you can donate to the American Red Cross via your iTunes account via this link.
- Yahoo! US has a links to organizations that can help in Japan, including the American Red Cross.
- Red Cross in England: British Red Cross
- Red Cross in Australia: Australian Red Cross
- Red Cross in Germany: Deutsches Rotes Kreuz
I feel an overwhelming sense of helplessness being so close but not being able to do anything, so perhaps if my boy's note inspires someone to help, I've done something.