On Friday 11 March at 2:46pm local time, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake struck off the northeast coast of Japan, immediately followed by 6.8 and 7.3 magnitude2 aftershocks. This is the fourth largest earthquake in the world since recordings began in 19002. The quake triggered a 23 feet high (7 meters) tsunami across a 1,300 mile coastline, taking with it buildings, trees, cars, boats, ships and trains several miles inland.
The disaster has left over 590,000 people homeless and living in temporary shelters. An estimated 4.4 million more are without electricity and another million homes without water. The death toll is being estimated as reaching more than 10,000.
To make matters worse, tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from a 30 mile radius area of a nuclear power plant that was damaged by the earthquake, threatening a radiation leak.
VMs TAKE ACTION
The Volunteer Ministers of the Church of Scientology in Japan instantly responded to the disaster and an international call for help has been issued to all VMs with experience in disaster response to come to Japan, as hundreds of VMs will be needed to assist the people of Japan. Volunteer Minister units in Japan, Australia and New Zealand have been activated and are in the process of setting up disaster response logistics.
The International Association of Scientologists (IAS) immediately granted funds for VM disaster relief efforts. The grant will cover all costs necessary to not only transport VMs into the disaster zones, but also to transport other disaster response specialists from other parts of the world. The grant also covers the costs of emergency equipment, medical supplies, food, tents, sleeping bags, communication devices and all other support for the VMs in the disaster area.