Oxfam Japan is appealing for public donations for two partner organizations, one that is assisting mothers and babies and the other providing information to non-Japanese speakers living in Japan.
"The Japanese state has the means to reach 99% of the population but there will always be some who need more specific assistance," said Oxfam Japan Executive Director, Akiko Mera, from Tokyo.
Ms. Mera said that Oxfam Japan will channel funds to the Japan Organization for International Cooperation on Family Planning (JOICFP). Together with the Japanese Midwives' Association and local doctors, the groups will help breast-feeding mothers by providing them with privacy and their babies with diapers and other products. They are offering counseling to women under high stress.
Another partner – the multi-language center FACIL – is helping non-Japanese speaking nationals living in affected areas. FACIL was set up as a response to the Kobe earthquake in 1995. It has set up a hotline for people to get information and is translating and re-publishing information put out by local authorities. There are an estimated 40,000 non-Japanese speakers in affected areas.
Most international NGOs like Oxfam are standing-by to assist on the invitation of leading local authorities, and are otherwise providing specialist help as described here.