Red Cross launches Japan quake appeal

The Cayman Islands Red Cross has
launched an appeal to help the people of Japan affected by last week’s
earthquake and tsunami.

The Red Cross has opened two Bank
of Butterfield Bank accounts for donations. People wishing to donate in CI
dollars can pay the money into: 02-201-035054/06 and in US dollars to:

Hemant Balgobin, disaster manager
of the local branch of the Red Cross, said that only donations of cash were
being accepted, as donations of food or supplies could not be delivered to

“Japan is a very proud society and
they have not formally requested international assistance at this stage,
outside of technical expertise and equipment,” he said. “A lot of people want
to help and so we are launching an appeal and will coordinate fundraising in

He said the Red Cross was one of
only three international aid organisations on the ground in Japan.

Cash and cheque donations are also
being accepted at the Red Cross office, Mr. Balgobin said.

Japan was struck by a 9.0 magnitude
earthquake on Friday, 11 March. This was followed by a massive 30-foot tsunami
in the north-eastern part of the country.

More than 3,000 people been confirmed
dead and the death toll is expected to rise. More than 4,000 people are missing
and some half a million people have been left homeless.