Every year PIPA organises a PIPA-cahrity auction to close the current auction season at the end of April/ beginning of May, whereby a share of the profits goes to a 'good cause', ‘promotion for the pigeon sport’… and other such things. Seeing the catastrophic consequenties of the earthquake in Japan last Spring, within PIPA the idea was launched to donate a share of the profits from this charity auction to aid the victims of this earthquake in Japan.
We have had ties with Japan and it's numerous pigeon fanciers for many years. The relationship with our agent (Dr. Masafumi Uozumi) there has been one based on mutual trust for many years.
It was obvious that the pigeon fanciers had their hearts in the right place: the numerous gifts after we announced our ‘purpose’, and the numerous bids in the auction itself are a perfect reflection of this. The result was the nice sum of € 7.000 which we were allowed to hand over on behalf of PIPA, but moreover on behalf of our pigeon fanciers.
The Japanese Red Cross was closely involved in the organisation of the aid at the affected area from the very beginning. At first this mainly took place via her local divisions in the disaster zone itself, which were soon supported by other local units from non-affected areas and also by the headquarters which sent additional aid workers and relief supplies to the disaster area .
The Japanese Red Cross was also designated by the government as the primary organisation for channeling the funds collected nationally . Via this central buro there was an amount collected reaching around 3 billion euros, wherefrom the greatest share has now been divided out amongst the 15 most affected prefectures according to predetermined criteria . In addition, 0,5 billion euro was collected via the internal channels of the Red Cross world wide, and these funds were used exclusively to finance the help operations of the Japanese Red Cross itself.
In Belgium the Red Cross collected more than 1 million euros, wherefrom 660.000 euro coming from the Flanders.
The projects supported by these funds can be divided into 9 major aspects:
1) Division of 1st emergency relief 2) Division of 1st urgent medicine 3) Supporting the regional health care system 4) Supporting the victims of the Nuclear Power Plant in Fukushima 5) Rebuilding of the health infrastructurei in Miyagi 6) Improving the living conditions in the temporary refuse homes and emergency centres 7) Specific help for the older population 8) Help in restarting the education 9) Various small regional projects
We are in any case convinced that our contribution will be spent well.
FLTR: John Kinnart, Herman Peeters from the Red Cross Flanders and Thomas Van Cauwenberghe
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