US donations to Japan near $150 million
WASHINGTON – US relief groups said Tuesday that Americans have donated close to $150 million to support Japan after its devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami.
The American Red Cross said it has raised $120.5 million. It said it gave $10 million initially to the Japanese Red Cross and would transfer $50 million in the coming days, along with more funds as they are available.
Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, chair of the American Red Cross board of governors, noted that the Japanese Red Cross had helped the United States following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and Hurricane Katrina.
“Now it is our opportunity — and our duty — to do what we can to help you,” she said.
Among other groups, Save the Children said it raised $24.5 million, of which $13.9 million was in the United States. The international group’s activities since the quake have included setting up areas for young survivors to play.
World Vision said it has raised $6.5 million in the United States. The Christian humanitarian group from Washington state said it has provided necessities such as warm clothing and diapers to more than 10,000 people.
Oregon-based Mercy Corps, which has been working with a local partner to distribute aid and is launching an emotional trauma program, said it has raised $5.79 million.
Other groups including The Salvation Army have also raised millions of dollars in the wake of the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami, which have left more than 27,000 people dead or missing.