It's been over two months since the earthquake + tsunami + nuclear meltdown + bureaucratic/ political/ corporate bungling disasters struck the northeast of Japan. Even though the story has faded from the headlines of international publications, the consequences of the cataclysmic events continue to ripple through the nation, especially for the people in the affected areas.
Over a hundred thousand people are still displaced, some perhaps for the rest of their lives; local industries have been wiped out; agricultural products are being destroyed due to contamination from radiation; and at least one nuclear reactor has melted down.
The outpouring of direct assistance and financial aid from around the world has been fantastic, and has certainly demonstrated how generous and caring people can be. The people of Japan have also been incredibly responsive and resilient, sending food, supplies, and money, as well as travelling to afflicted areas to provide volunteer labour and skills.
The crisis is far from over though, and in extreme times and circumstances like this, every contribution is meaningful.
To help raise additional funds for the people of northeast Japan, the Hideyo Noguchi Memoral Hall in Tokyo is organising a communal photography exhibition featuring images and video footage from a wide range of contributors, including both professionals and amateurs.
In case you're wondering, Hideyo Noguchi is a famous doctor/ bacteriologist whose portrait appears on the Japanese 1,000 Yen note. Noguchi-san was born in Fukushima prefecture, which is ground zero for the nuclear reactor meltdown(s).
A handful of my photographs will be among those on display at the exhibit, which runs from 16 July (Saturday) to 31 July (Sunday), from 12:00 to 20:00 each day, with an opening reception on 16 July at 18:00.
Admission to the exhibition will be free (thanks to the generosity of several corporate sponsors), but there will be sales of books, images, and products from northeast Japan, with all proceeds to be contributed as financial aid.