Archive for the ‘japan’ Tag

Summary: Scientology Volunteer Ministers Provide Disaster Relief to Earthquake and Tsunami Victims in Japan

For the past two months, hundreds of Scientology Volunteer Ministers have served in Japan in the wake of the magnitude 9 earthquake and 30-foot tsunami. Several hundred more are now en route to continue their work in Tokyo, Onagawa, Kesennuma and Ishinomaki.

Within 24 hours of the disaster, Volunteer Ministers assessment teams arrived in the areas most affected by the disaster and met with local officials to find out what was needed and wanted. With more than 400,000 persons displaced, a disaster response base was established in Tokyo to coordinate the delivery of Volunteer Ministers aid.

On an immediate basis, Volunteer Ministers international headquarters in Los Angeles flew a 15-man team of search and rescue specialists called Los Topos to Japan. Los Topos and the Volunteer Ministers have worked together at Ground Zero New York, after hurricanes Katrina and Rita in New Orleans, and following earthquakes in Haiti and New Zealand. On arriving, Los Topos met with the Japanese Army and launched a search and rescue mission to find survivors.

For nearly two months, more than 140 Volunteer Ministers from around the world have been helping in shelters in Kesennuma, Sendai, Watari, Onagawa, Ishinomaki and Idda; working in distribution centers to organize the delivery of food, water and supplies; administering shelters and assisting on the cleanup of towns and villages that were destroyed.

The volunteers have helped more than 140,000 people. They are providing Scientology assists. Often described as “spiritual first aid,” assists help the individual overcome the effects of loss, shock and trauma and speed recovery by addressing the spiritual and emotional factors related to illness and injury.

In shelters where assists are provided it is not uncommon to hear comments such as “I cannot believe I have received such a helpful service in a time like this,” and “it eased the shock of the earthquake.”

One man whose inn was swept away in the tsunami began his assist in sorrow and walked away humming, telling a Volunteer Minister he planned to rebuild as soon as possible.

To date, Volunteer Ministers have delivered more than 12,000 assists and trained some 1,400 people in assist delivery in Japan, prompting a Hashikami City Councilor to tell the Volunteer Minister that theirs is an important service the Japanese people can find nowhere else.

The official in charge of the Onagawa Town disaster effort expressed his appreciation for the help of the Scientology Disaster Response Team in a letter stating: “I have heard many disaster victims say they feel good, relaxed, relieved from body pain and healed from the trauma of this disaster after this group delivers the technology called ‘assists’ developed by L. Ron Hubbard.”

The volunteers maintain communication and coordinate their work with the heads of local volunteer organizations, disaster relief groups and government officials to ensure they are providing the services most needed and wanted.

After learning from assessments that the elderly in outlying areas were unable to get to shelters or procure food, the Volunteer Ministers arranged for the donation, transport and delivery of 32 bicycles to Hashikami, which are now used by youth in the area to deliver these supplies and food.

Finding out from Kesennuma Fishermen Association that business was crippled for lack of a forklift, the Volunteer Ministers arranged for the donation and delivery of one.

On a day-to-day basis, Volunteer Ministers transport evacuees to public baths. They organize music concerts and bring hairdressers to the shelters to keep living standards and morale high.

The Volunteer Ministers in Japan work in coordination with groups such as the Red Cross, the Lutheran Church, Chuetsu Disaster Prevention Safety Drive, Kaizou-ji Temple, Yoake-juku NGO and Rescue Stockyard, and in the private sector with Toyota, Monavie Japan and the Kesennuma Junior Chamber of Commerce, which are also providing or funding relief.

Volunteer Ministers disaster response will continue in Japan as long as the need continues.

The Scientology Volunteer Minister program was initiated by Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard in 1976. There are now hundreds of thousands of people trained in the skills of a Volunteer Minister across 185 nations.

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Volunteer Ministers Reporting from Japan

Scientology Volunteer Minister groups in the disaster zone, Japan

 

(News from the Scientology Volunteer Ministers blog)

Tokyo/Sendai

We just welcomed have six new Volunteer Ministers to the Japan team!  Four are headed to the disaster zone and two will work from the Tokyo headquarters.

We are also pleased to report that a new Volunteer Minister Logistics Base has now officially been established in Tokyo and provides working space for 30 Volunteer Ministers to handle logistics for the disaster areas. Volunteer Ministers arriving in Tokyo can settle and brief at the Base before deploying to the North of Japan.

Last week two Volunteer Ministers vans left Tokyo to deliver sleeping bags and mats to shelters in Onagawa and remain in Northern Japan for services. Both are now in high demand daily to deliver food and water to remote shelters around the city of Sendai.

Onagawa

Life seems to be starting up again here the last few days.  When we came about 10 days ago, many people spent most of the day in bed. The feeling was one of grief.

On Friday we cleaned out the shelter building and regorganized spaces for each family! Everyone participated and we created the most amazing village out of cardboard in the shelter hall.

Today we got the elementary schools going again and also here life is finally beginning again.

Watari

Yesterday, 2 April 2011, our Volunteer Ministers in the Myiagi Prefecture split into two groups. One went to a shelter that had been set up in the Osaka Elementary and Junior High and the other went to Yoshida Elementary and Watari Elementary schools. In the past 48 hours we helped 2,026 people in these shelters, gave 617 assists*and trained 64 people in Volunteer Minister technology.

One man who was very upset received an assist. In recounting what happened to him when the tsunami hit, he suddenly began to chuckle.  He realized, he said, “I can’t really do anything but laugh about it!”

One elderly woman received an assist in Shishiori Junior High School and told the Volunteer Minister with a huge smile on her face that she felt like she could “float down the stairs.”

A Volunteer Minister came across a boy in the shelter who looked bored, so she taught him how to deliver assists.  The next thing she knew, he had helped four people with assists.

Also our translator Peter learned how to deliver assists and he was completely blown away that he could use this to help people.  He’d never done anything like it before.

Kesennuma

Three young Volunteer Ministers went to Hashikami School in Kesennuma City and met with a teacher who welcomed them and invited them to delivere a lecture on Assists to 25 students. The students were interested throughout and at the lecture’s end, they grouped in seven Volunteer Minister teams and first delivered assists to each other and then to 175 refugees.

The students were amazed at what they were able to do with assist technology, especially when one woman who hadn’t been walking began doing so after an assist. The look on the student’s face was priceless. The brand new Volunteer Minister had only just learned about assists herself.

*Assist: L. Ron Hubbard developed numerous applications of his discoveries on the mental and spiritual aspects of a person’s physical difficulties, one of them being the technology of Assists. An Assist is an action undertaken to help a person confront his physical difficulties, overcome trauma, ease discomfort and speed recovery.  For more information go to:www.volunteerministers.org/solutions/assists.html.