Washington Organizations, Companies, Citizens Respond to Japan Quake

Our thoughts are with the people of Japan in the aftermath of last week’s earthquake and tsunami. The earthquake—a 9.0 on the Richter scale—is considered the world’s 5th largest in over a century and triggered a massive tsunami that hit the Japanese coast.

We would like to remind you that compassion can be turned into action. We are not powerless bystanders; we belong to a global development community, rich in resources that can be used to aid the victims in this disaster. These resources range from personal finances, to networking connections, to organizational expertise. We encourage you consider how you might fit into the response already being undertaken by Washington-based organizations to assist areas affected by the earthquake.

If you are responding to this crisis, we want to hear about it!

If you are a member organization and are providing disaster relief, we would love to help promote your efforts. Please email megan@globalwa.org with a brief description of your response. After we review it, it will be added to this list.

We applaud these members for their quick action:

Peace Winds America’s mission is “to build capacity, increase collaboration, and empower local communities in the Asia Pacific in order to improve preparedness and provide a more integrated, efficient, and effective disaster response.”

Response: Peace Winds America and sister organization Peace Winds Japan are providing aid in response to the earthquake. Peace Winds Japan has 20 years of experience in disaster response and is one of the largest disaster response organizations in the country.

Mercy Corps “exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping people build secure, productive and just communities.”

Response: Mercy Corps is collaborating with longtime partner organization Peace Winds America to respond to this disaster.

World Vision is “a Christian relief, development and advocacy organization dedicated to working with children, families and communities to overcome poverty and injustice.”

Response: World Vision has a long history of disaster response, including work in Haiti last year. An assessment team is on the ground, coordinating relief efforts for last week’s earthquake. Visit their press page for the latest news and updates.

Microsoft “is committed to serving the public good through innovative technologies and partnerships that contribute to economic growth and social opportunity and by delivering on our business responsibilities of growth and value to customers, shareholders, and employees.”

Response: Microsoft is making an initial commitment of $2 million to disaster relief in Japan and has already started offering support, software, and other technical assistance to help get operations running again.

RenegAID “is dedicated to improving people’s ability to reestablish themselves in catastrophic disasters.”

Response: RenegAID is working with Spokane Falls Community College’s Japanese Club to put together an effective response. RenegAID will fund all administration costs so that 100% of their donations go to the survivors.

Additionally, RenegAID’s Ready-to-Go Bike project for catastrophic disaster response is ready to implement.  If any organization or individual is interested in working with them on this project, please contact Eunice Stime at 509-595-8777.

JP Morgan Chase‘s  “philanthropic goal is to be the catalyst to meaningful, positive, and sustainable change within our highest need neighborhoods and communities across the globe.”

Response: JP Morgan Chase has committed $5 million to relief and recovery efforts in Japan and has also implemented an employee matching program to encourage employees to give as well. The firm has over 1,000 employees in Japan and has invited them to use JP Morgan Chase facilities as a shelter if needed.


Other responses from Washington organizations and businesses:

Mobile Giving Foundation “was founded in 2007 by veterans of the wireless industry who wanted to harness the immense power of wireless communications to empower non-profit organizations.”

Response: Give to tsunami relief by text message through The Mobile Giving Foundation! Please view their news alert to find out how to give quickly and easily to your charity of choice, using your mobile phone!

Medical Teams International’s missions is “To demonstrate the love of Christ to people affected by disaster, conflict and poverty around the world.”

Response: Medical Teams International is working with three partners: Japan International Food for the Hungry, Friends with the Voiceless, Christian Reformed World Relief Committee. These partners are conducting assessments and working directly with local churches to provide relief to victims.


Response: Boeing has committed $2 million to relief efforts, which will come from employee contributions and the company’s charitable trust. Boeing contributions will go directly to the Red Cross.


Response: Starbucks and Starbucks Coffee Japan have committed $1.2 million to the Red Cross to help the relief efforts.


Response: Amgen is donating $1 million to Direct Relief International and International Medical Corps to be used for survivors’  health services and basic needs.


Response: The Weyerhaeuser Foundation is contributing $500,000 to the Red Cross for the relief effort.

Cascade Designs

Response: Cascade Designs has donated mattresses, water reservoirs and dry storage bags to Operation USA, which are being shipped to Japan to meet the basic needs of disaster survivors.




Kids and activism: A recent blog from The Social Change Collaboratory provides guidance and tools for organizing a fundraising campaign for children who might want to respond to the disaster.

List of Charities: The Chronicle of Philanthropy has a great compilation of U.S. charities and companies that are responding to the quake.

Text your donation: Did you know that you can text your donation to many of the major charities? You can do this through:

Verizon Customers and Employees: Verizon is offering its customers free calling to Japan until April 10th and allowing Verizon customers to text a $10 donation to many of the major charities providing emergency assistance. Verizon will also match employee donations to The Red Cross, World Vision, and Save the Children, up to $1,000 per employee.

The Japan-America Society of the State of Washington: A great place to check back for updates and ways to get involved.

Seattle Japan Relief: “a collaboration of Japanese American and Japan related cultural, educational, and civic organizations standing together to promote relief and recovery following the devastating earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan.”

World Vision’s Japan Press Kit: Useful information, press releases and resources with information on the quake and updates on World Vision’s response.

Donations to Date: The Chronicle on Philanthropy is tracking donations received for the earthquake by organization.

Grantmakers who want to give to the relief effort: The Council On Foundation’s International Grantmaking site is providng  resources and information for grantmakers looking to give to the relief effort in Japan.

The American Red Cross: is supporting the Japanese Red Cross, which is on the ground providing healthcare, supplies, and other assistance to disaster victims.

Thank you all for your concern and your efforts!