Sunday, March 13, 2011

Prayers for Japan

Some of the many apocalyptic images from Japan
Photographs by Reuters, AFP/Getty Images

Three days after a devastating earthquake unleashed a tsunami in which at least 10,000 people are feared dead, Japan faces a deepening nuclear crisis and the prospect of another very powerful quake.

Relief organizations and governments around the world are responding to help people, and now several groups are stepping in to assist the thousands of animals that have been impacted as well, but unfortunately, animals have to wait longer for help to arrive.

Since animals (wildlife, birds, farm animals) have no one to speak for them, I find their plight equally compelling. There are many organizations and agencies whose mission is to help animals in disaster areas. If you'd like to help, two that I recommend supporting are:

World Vets is an international veterinary aid organization that provides “free veterinary aid, resources and support during times of disaster all over the world”. Their non-profit efforts spans 25 countries and 6 continents, and handles both veterinary issues and human health issues caused by animal-related infectious diseases. World Vets is already working to help victims of the earthquake and tsunami, and desperately needs donations.

The National Disaster Search Dog Foundation is a non-profit, FEMA-certified agency that searches for survivors in the wreckage of catastrophic events such as the one is Japan. NDSDF has already deployed six Canine Disaster Search Teams to respond to the current crisis; each task force is made up of approximately 72 members (including both humans and Urban Search and Rescue dogs) and some 75 tons of rescue equipment.

Say a prayer for the people and animals of Japan. Be grateful for all that you have and for the safety of those you love.

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