While the recent earthquake, tsunami and nuclear problems have had an adverse effect on the people of Japan, a number of locals have been affected as well.
Nancy Yamamura of Greenwood was concerned for her brother-in-law, who lives in Tokyo and felt the earthquake, but he phoned family the day after the disaster to say he was OK.
“I was quite concerned, especially because he’s got some health issues at the moment (cancer) and he was on the mend so I’ve been worried about him anyways in the last six months and then this came up,” she said.
“We were quite relieved to hear that their family was alright.”
Yamamura said that there are locals that want to help but aren’t sure what to do.
“Here in Greenwood there are people who would like to do something because we’re the smallest city in Canada and we have some (people of) Japanese origin here but at this point, we don’t know how quite to go about it so that whatever money we do acquire or obtain, how much of it would actually get into the people’s hands.”
Nobby Hamagami of Christina Lake has relatives throughout Japan, including some who live relatively close to the epicentre, and fortunately none were hurt.
“I got to talk to my younger brother and asked about my younger sister and another brother and they said everything is fine,” Hamagami said.
“In Osaka, I have my husband’s kid brother and I phoned him and he said that right now, the terror of oncoming events is the nuclear part of it; it’s the radiation they’re worried about.”
When asked if she was worried about her relatives, she said that Japan is doing all it can and there wasn’t much she could do.
“They (Japan) are doing their best so what more can you do?” she asked.
“If they were just ignoring the whole thing it would be different but they’re working on it and many countries are trying to help, so what can you do? Sit and wait.”
Hamagami is touched that people are asking her about the well-being of her relatives in Japan and is thankful.
As for Yamamura, she is keeping the people in the areas affected in her prayers.
“The situation is very bad and I assume it’s going to get worse but I hope the best for them and hope and pray that they have the strength to overcome all this,” she said.