SOUTHERN ALBERTA: Two months after the earthquake in Japan, residents are starting to rebuild, including people in Lethbridge's twin city: Towada, Japan.
"They had no water, just bottled water coming in. And their resources for mail and all the other essential services were next to nothing for quite some time," Harold Pereverseff, president of the Lethbridge Twinning Society, told Country 95 News about the conditions in the town during recent weeks.
Towada is located about 250 km from the impact area of the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan March 11. The city was spared loss of life, but Pereverseff says there were still reasons to fear.
"They've been having pretty well constant tremors and aftershocks. Some of them at the beginning were hourly, then they went every few hours, and even now they still experience these tremors," said Pereverseff.
A spokesperson for the Red Cross says donations toward Japanese earthquake relief have been flooding in steadily from the local community.
"We do have quite a large Japanese population here who have connections and family members, so they're very personally impacted," said Shirley Diaz, operations manager for the Southern Alberta branch of the Canadian Red Cross. She says at least 33 fundraising events have been held in the area, with more donations still to come. Diaz added those funds will go a long way as relief crews in Japan switch phases.
"In the initial response, we're looking at providing immediate shelter, food, and clothing. When we're moving into the recovery phase we're looking at supporting people to get back to their lifestyle and providing them with long term shelter," she said.
The Canadian Red Cross has raised more than $ 27 million across the country for Japan earthquake relief so far.