On April 2–3, JEN brought its third shipment of relief supplies to Ishinomaki (Miyagi Prefecture), providing clothing donated by UNIQLO as well as other supplies donated from around the country. They have assisted more than 2,000 people in that town to date. Among the donated items, the people in Ishinomaki were particularly pleased to receive tall rubber boots and other items for cleaning as they face the daunting task of removing the sludge left by the tsunami. Since the evenings are still cold, the disposable hand-warmers and scarf-sized towels were also greatly appreciated.
On April 1, Japan Platform and JANIC (Japan NGO Center for International Cooperation) released recommendations to assist international NGOs that are trying to help in Northeastern Japan. Among other points, they highlighted the fact that many of those who are in need are not in evacuation centers; that long-term assistance is needed; that organizations should be sure to coordinate their work with the Prefectural Social Welfare Councils, each of which has a Disaster Volunteer Center; and that international NGOs would be advised to work together with the local NGOs and volunteers already on the ground in order to make their aid most effective.
Peace Winds Japan is working with American NGO Mercy Corps to develop mid- to long-term projects, particularly in the area of psycho-social support. These organizations have worked together successfully in the past for disaster relief efforts in other countries.