In response to the widespread destruction caused by the Tohoku-Kanto Earthquake and resulting tsunami on March 11, Tenrikyo Church Headquarters immediately established the Tenrikyo Tohoku-Kanto Earthquake Disaster Relief Headquarters (headed by Director-in-Chief of Administrative Affairs Yoshitaro Ueda) to organize and coordinate Tenrikyo’s relief activities effectively.
As part of its initial response efforts, Tenrikyo Disaster Relief Headquarters dispatched five water trucks on March 16 in partnership with various organizations. The trucks were first delivered to Niigata Diocese Office in Niigata City, where the diocese’s Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps is headquartered. They are now being used in Miyagi Prefecture to provide water for people in affected areas. On the 19th, five more water trucks left the Home of the Parent for the Tohoku region. In addition, Tenrikyo Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps (headed by Yuichi Tanaka) has been consecutively dispatching teams to help with the relief activities.
Between March 19 and 22, the Disaster Relief Headquarters sent representatives to the prefectural offices of the three hardest-hit prefectures—Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima—to deliver monetary donations totaling 30 million yen (US$367,000). On those occasions, the representatives also informed the prefectural authorities that Tenrikyo was making preparations to provide shelter for 3,000 evacuees in Church Headquarters’ facilities and followers dormitories in the Home of the Parent.
Tenrikyo Disaster Relief Headquarters has also been accepting donations to “Tenrikyo Disaster Relief Fund” and “Tenrikyo Fund to Support Affected Dioceses and Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps.” As of March 29, “Tenrikyo Disaster Relief Fund” had received 1,601 donations totaling 114,123,808 yen (US$1,357,647) and “Tenrikyo Fund to Support Affected Dioceses and Disaster Relief Hinokishin Corps” had received 975 donations totaling 91,959,095 yen (US$1,093,969).