Donations for Japan Earthquake Relief

Flag of the Red Cross
Image via Wikipedia, click to donate to Red Cross

Our thoughts and prayers are with our friends in Japan and everybody there dealing with the aftermath of the earthquake and whatever problems are yet to come. This article from Forbes gives some suggestions on how to donate and how to avoid online donation scams that often sadly follow natural disasters.


From the Forbes blog post:

The American Red Cross has already added “Japan Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami” as one of the choices for online donations at Gifts will support disaster relief efforts to help those affected by the earthquake in Japan and the tsunami throughout the Pacific. Alternatively, you can simply make a $10 donation by texting  REDCROSS to  90999. The Japanese Red Cross has already mobilized eleven teams to heavily-damaged communities to provide assessments, first aid, and emotional support and relief.

The Salvation Army is also accepting text donations. Text the word Japan to 80888 to make a $10 donation to support its relief efforts. The Salvation Army says it is sending a team to Sendai, the most heavily damaged city, tonight and tomorrow will start providing basic necessities.

For more ways to donate by mobile phone, click  here.

For those interested in Toyota's operations, reports on Friday said all assembly plants were functioning, but new reports say that the company will shut down facilities in Japan on Monday to evaluate impacts on their suppliers and supply chain.

Toyota's statement on their operations.

Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda statement (“With life the number-one priority, we want to do all we can to contribute to the relief efforts.”)

Please help, if you can, by donating to the Red Cross, Salvation Army, or your favorite trusted charity.

Relief efforts are still ongoing from last year's Haiti earthquake and they could still use your support, as highlighted in our Lean for Haiti fundraising project.

Similar pages from within the Lean community:

As Pascal Dennis and Al Norval wrote on their page:

The Lean movement owes much of its roots to Toyota and to the Japanese people. Lean and Japan have always had a special bond.

As we were taught, Lean is based on a few key principles:

– Respect for Humanity

– Elimination of Waste

– Continuous Improvement

So, yes, the Lean community should show its support for Japan in these difficult times.

What do you think? Please scroll down (or click) to post a comment. Or please share the post with your thoughts on LinkedIn – and follow me or connect with me there.

Did you like this post? Make sure you don't miss a post or podcast — Subscribe to get notified about posts via email daily or weekly.

Check out my latest book, The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation:

Get New Posts Sent To You

Select list(s):
Previous articleMy Four Hypotheses for Friday’s DFW Healthcare/Industry Lean Gathering
Next articleGuest Post: From Ad-Hoc to Systematic Change: A Framework for Kaizen Event Programs
Mark Graban
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


  1. I’ve donated to the Ref Cross. But let’s face it – those of us in the Lean community owe the Japanese a huge debt. We need to pay that debt, and then pay it forward. I’d love to hear/read a discussion on a meaningful professional response. Thanks.

  2. FYI – Wikipedia’s info on Japan’s aid to Katrina victims…

    The Japanese Foreign Ministry said that it would provide $10,000 in cash to the American Red Cross to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina. Japan also identified needs in affected regions via the U.S. government and provided up to $10,000 in emergency supplies such as tents, blankets and power generators if they receive requests from the U.S. for such assistance. Private and corporate donations totaled over $13 million.[33] One Japanese individual, Takashi Endo, donated USD $1 million from his personal funds to Katrina relief efforts.

    • I don’t know if we can count on Wikipedia being completely accurate there. A CNN story from 2005 says the amount from the Japanese government was $200,000:

      — Japan has offered to provide $200,000 to the American Red Cross. The government of Japan will identify needs in the affected regions through the U.S. government and, upon request, is ready to provide necessary and available emergency assistance supply amounting to up to $300,000 worth of items such as tents, blankets, power generators, portable water tanks and more from a supply depot maintained by the Japanese government in Florida.

      Either way, I’m not exactly sure what your point is exactly… that we shouldn’t help Japan? Americans are a very generous people. That’s a good thing.

  3. It looks like, no matter which numbers you look at, Japan “generously” came up with maybe, a half million dollars. Wow. There is a local disaster going on in Southern California right now, that’s not even being reported – The public schools are firing MANY teachers, increasing class sizes, CLOSING SCHOOL LIBRARIES (No access to books!) Where’s the generosity? Where’s the media? Too busy covering this weeks ONLY story. I wish people would donate to their local schools, so that our kids (our future) has a chance to compete with those Japanese children.

  4. Ray – this is a pretty bleak opinion. Lean practitioners of all people should realise the world is an interconnected system and Japan’s success will be the USA’s success in the long term.

    Japanese kids are not responsible for the woes of the State of California and the other states in trouble – overconsumption, underinvestment, a culture that ridicules the development of human capital and prefers glossy superficial success – that would be enough of an explanation.

    By all means, encourage people to donate to their local schools. The return (the REAL return) on investment will be many, many times larger than the shallow ROIs promoted on Wall Street or in the other dubious financial scams which seem to attract so much idle capital, including, it seems, the investment fund of many US state and local governments, who were quick to put their money into the Lehmanns Brothers and their ilk.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.