As all of you must be aware of by now, the earthquake that occurred on March 11 off the coast of Miyagi Prefecture has caused extensive damage to Northern Japan. CLAIR, the embassies, and prefectural advisors are all working to confirm the safety and whereabouts of JET participants in the affected areas. While we wait to find out about our friends and loved ones, there are several ways to contribute to the relief effort.

How can you help?
The Japanese Red Cross Society is collecting donations to assist victims of the natural disasters that have struck the region. You can help the Red Cross provide shelter, food, blankets, etc. to victims by donating to their relief fund. The Japanese Red Cross Society’s website often reaches user capacity but is still in operation.

However, you can also donate directly to the Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami Relief efforts of the American Red Cross now.

In addition, once recovery efforts are underway, AJET will be cooperating with CLAIR and PAs in the affected areas to collect various items that people may need. We will post a list of requested items and collection methods in the near future. Please continue to check for further details.

Need to talk to someone about this week’s events?
The Peer Support Group (PSG) hotline will be open for 24 hours a day from Saturday, March 12 until Monday, March 14 at 7 a.m. If you wish to speak with someone about the events of this week, please call: 050 (5534) 5566.

Still trying to reach a friend?
If you are searching for family or friends in the affected areas, first check this partial list of American and Canadian JET participants whose safety has been confirmed.

To reach JETs directly, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites are proving to be the most effective means of communication as phone lines are busy or down. Also, if someone you know does not have access to communication systems, please communicate on their behalf.

For more information please check out the Google Crisis Response Links. This information includes a people finder link, infrastructural information, and the latest news in English.

If you are still searching for news about a friend or coworker, please contact that individual’s national embassy in Japan (information for each embassy is listed on our website at If you are unable to locate them through the embassy, call the JETLINE at 03 (5213) 1729 to speak with a Programme Coordinator at CLAIR.

Do you have information about what happened?
Send pictures with English descriptions/stories to at will be published on  Pictures can be submitted anonymously or be attributed, according to the author’s preference.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your block representative on the National AJET Council or the Chair, Caroline Ideus at .