Giving Back To Japan

Posted on October 17, 2011 Under Life


I’m back in Japan, but this time the purpose of my trip is much different than usual. I’m not here to shop, I’m not here to meet people on business, or to sing karaoke.

I’m here in service, and I’m here to give back.

Long story short: I’ll be joining a mental health team led by my father up to parts of Sendai and nearby Fukushima.

I’ve been given my radiation dosimeter and mask, and will be taking other precautions to remain safe– but this will undoubtedly be a difficult and reflective experience.

For decades, my father has led mental health care professionals into places of terrible natural and man-created disasters. I rarely have had a chance to join him, but the tragedy in Japan hit me too close to my heart to not do my part.  I owe Japan infinitely for it’s inspiration and impact on my life.

Primarily, our team will conduct trainings for volunteers, school officials, nurses, social workers, as well as workshops directly aimed at local children affected by the earthquake and tsunami disaster– all to fight off PTSD which affects so many people after these kinds of disasters.

This is his team’s second trip here already this year– you can read (and see) more about the first trip here.

To help raise money and pay for the hard costs and realities of this kind of work, we broke down the prices of travel, airport shuttles, gas for the cars, translators, food, radiation detection equipment, and more. Check it out, and if you can kick in, every little bit helps.

You can read our journal containing updates from the field and reflections here.

I will also be tweeting as much as I can from the field, and updating with pictures on here.

Wish us luck, and thanks for reading.