How have you responded to the current situation in Japan?
GiveWell has posted it's responses and recommendations (posts on 3/11 and 3/15) in regards to the ongoing difficulties in Japan. GiveWell articles are sometimes hard to digest for the first time, especially during heightened times of awareness due to recent news of tragedy, but their analyses offer a fresh perspective that may help us be more effective as a part of doing "good" in the world.
The posts also link to specific and general information on donating for disasters on Good Intentions Are Not Enough. In the wake of situations where it seems like time is of the essence, perhaps time is what we as observers should take before taking actions. As connected as we can be with today's continual media coverage, two of the best things we can do is stay well-informed of what is going on during a natural disaster that affects any population and to keep those people--individuals, friends, families, societies--in our thoughts.
With all that said, GiveWell understands that we emotionally donate and want to be a part of "something". With that, I recommend This Paper Ship's Thousand Paper Cranes and Cherry Blossoms prints. They are sentimental pieces and perhaps can be bought as gifts. Part of the purchase price goes to the American Red Cross. They are $20 each. This Paper Ship is a local design business in Greensboro.
Personally, I have two friends from the United States that are working in Japan and I immediately thought of when I heard the news of the earthquake and tsunami. I've met various Japanese students at UNCG during the years I was there and thought of them as well. My friends and I shared news we heard of our friends abroad and we are keeping abreast of the news from Japan and how it is affecting the people and place there and the world as a whole organism.
How have you responded to the current situation in Japan? Do you have friends or family that have been affecte, directly or indirectly? How have you personally been affected? Do you get your news on the disaster(s) from one, a few, or as many media sources as possible?