VOICES FROM THE FIELDTHE IRC BLOG
This Week's Voices: Worried about Japan
January 6, 2012 by The IRC
|The IRC's Shinko Tana presents a shovel and a snow blower -- gifts that represent a donation from the IRC and our partner AAR Japan -- to an official from the tsunami-devastated city of Kamaishi, Japan. Many of the coastal city's tsunami survivors are spending the winter on snowier high ground. Photo: Peter Biro/IRC|
The International Rescue Committee's Japan advisor, Shinko Tana, on focusing attention on overlooked communities that are trying to recover from the devastation left by the March 2011 tsunami ... plus other notable quotes touching on the IRC's work around the world:
"Many individuals and companies from around the world sent donations after the [March 11, 2011 tsunami] disaster. The people who know Japan are worried about the situation as though it is happening to their own country. While the media continues to focus their attention on the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, we hope to report on what is happening to the other areas devastated by the tsunami."
- Shinko Tana, the IRC's Japan advisor, in the Dec 21, 2011 edition of Japan's Fukkou Kamaishi Shimbun newspaper. The story (no link available) notes that the IRC and our partner the Association for Aid and Relief, Japan (AAR Japan) donated 1,000 shovels and five snow blowers to the city of Kamaishi, which was heavily damaged by the tsunami. Many of Kamaishi's survivors have moved into temporary homes on high ground that tends to receive more snow than coastal areas.
”It is a childhood that I do not wish for anybody.”
- Sofia, one of about 10,000 boys and girls who have been pulled into Colombia’s decades-old war between guerillas, paramilitary units and government forces. She is quoted in a blog post from the Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict,
“I have Facebook friends in Georgia and Canada and Katmandu and Bhutan, too. We are in touch all the time.”
- Deepak Ganga, a 20-year-old senior at a Maryland high school who spent his first 19 years in a Nepalese camp with other refugees from Bhutan. He was quoted in a recent story in The Washington Post.
“Disabled people sometimes lose hope. The [IRC's community based rehabilitation] program is a lifesaver, taking them from the dark into the light.”
- Dario Waodiond, who lost the use of both his legs to polio at age 3. Today, he gets around via a hand-powered tricycle provided by the IRC and works as a medical assistant at an IRC hospital.
“If I were in Somalia, I would simply go to a traditional birth attendant and my chances of living would have been very slim. But here, I know I will get help and even if something bad comes up, they will be able to treat it.”
- Sophia Abdi, a 32-year-old mother of three, who is expecting her fourth child at a clinic run by the IRC in the Dadaab refugee camp complex in northwestern Kenya.
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