October 13, 2011

JEN has been working in Kitakamimachi (Miyagi Prefecture) to help restore the local economy and get businesses back on their feet. This was a region that did not receive aid until long after the disaster. JEN arrived there in July. One businessman had lost his office building and all of his trucks in the tsunami and was unsure where he should even start to rebuild his company. JEN began by sending volunteers to help him, and then loaned him a 4-ton truck. With that assistance, he was able to relaunch his business. One of the first things he did with the truck was to help rebuild a levee near the site of a shipbuilding company that was one of his best customers prior to the disaster, which was his way of contributing to society.

JEN also is continuing to help homeowners repair their houses. In the small community of Hamagurihama—which is comprised of fewer than 20 households—the damage from the earthquake and tsunami was compounded by last month’s typhoon, which caused flash flooding in their neighborhood. The volunteers first had to shovel out the mud and then laid new floorboards for the residents.