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The Work Room is the Creative Journal of Wendy Sue where she shares her creative journey in all things handmade. The Work Room also offers an alternative to your typical jewelry making workshops. Scroll down to the end of the page to see how you can learn to make your unique piece of artisan jewelry online.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Helping Angels : Socks For Japan

I guess by now everyone would have known about the devastating disaster that hit Japan. It saddens me a lot just reading through the news on the latest update.

Makes you realize once again how fragile life can be and you never really know what is going to happen tomorrow.

Torinoumi on the eastern coast of Japan before the earthquake and tsunami disaster (left) and after.

Japan's disaster reminds me a lot of a Malay language's proverb I learn in school back then; "Sudah jatuh, ditimpa tangga".

The literal translation means to have the ladder leaning against the wall fall on you after you have fell on the floor yourself. Loosely translated as just bad luck! One disaster after another befall upon you.

It started off with the earthquake and because of the earthquake you later on get the tsunami and then the nuclear accident and snow snap. It makes me cringe just at the thought of it.

And another malay language proverb comes to mind; "malang tidak berbau".

Literal translation to mean upcoming disaster has no smell and loosely translated as you'll never know when bad luck's going to hit you!

And now, is you would like to extend a helping hand to Japan, this is what you can do


Helping Angels is a volunteer organisation founded by Poesy, a dear friend of mine. Poesy and I shares quite a bit in common. For one, we are both involved in making jewelry and secondly, we share similar life experiences such that we can relate to each other but that's anonther story. You can find out more about Helping Angels through their Facebook Group here.

American author Jason Kelly, through Helping Angels  is collecting socks for earthquake victims.

Why socks?  Because it's one way you can help Japan, directly and meaningfully. Do spare some time to find out more on how you can send the earthquake victims a pair of warm socks here.

I just realize that you'll need to sign in with your Facebook account in order to view more. So, for the benefit of those who don't, I shall copy and paste the info here :-

Dear Angels,

I am sure each and everyone of us are concerned and would like to find ways to do something for our Japanese neighbours. After days of wondering what to do while I stared in horror at the terrible news images on German television and the internet, I found something we can all do as a random act of kindness. It seems like a great idea for those of us who aspires to bring comfort and joy to those inflicted by such magn...itude of loss. If you do end up participating in this tiny movement of empathy, do sign off your package as a 'Helping Angel' below your name so we pass on our aspiration to grow this goodness network, one day may your recipient be an angel too. I shall sign off here while you can read on. Let us all exercise our compassion.

Love & Aspirations For All.
Yours, P

American author Jason Kelly, who lives in Sano, Japan, is collecting socks for earthquake victims. He writes:

Here’s a way you can help Japan, directly and meaningfully.

Hundreds of my readers in the United States and other parts of the world have asked me how they can help the victims of the devastating earthquake that struck Japan on March 11. There are many places to donate money, and that’s a wonderful thing to do, but direct aid is also cherished by victims.

My office location is perfect for managing a direct-aid operation because it’s close enough to the primary damage zone that we can physically get there to help, but far enough away that mail delivery is working. So we quickly set ourselves up to run this operation, called Socks for Japan.


- Send only new socks.
All human beings are comforted by a fresh, clean pair of socks. Other advantages socks offer this operation: their sizes are easy, they don’t break, people need lots of them in disastrous times without running water, people can keep them forever and remember that somebody from far away cared. Please do not send any other items of clothing, food, etc. Just socks, but go ahead and choose nice ones that will brighten somebody’s day.

- Group similar socks in one package.
To help our inventory management, put all socks of one type in a single package. For example, “men’s large,” “girls’ medium,” “boys’ small,” “baby girls’,” and so on. Different colors and styles are fine in the same package, but keep the gender and sizes consistent, please. If you include several different groups in a single box, please pack the groups in clear bags with a description enclosed, facing out.

- List package contents on the package.
To help our inventory management, write on the outside of the package exactly what’s inside. For example, “ten pairs, men’s medium socks” or “one pair, girl’s small socks” and so on. This will enable us to quickly group inventory for efficient distribution without opening packages.

- Enclose a short care letter. Japanese people treasure letters, especially ones from foreigners. Victims of the 1995 Hanshin quake in Kobe said that care letters were among the most uplifting items they received. If you enclose a care letter, provide a copy of it for each pair of socks you send. This will enable us to hand each recipient of your socks a letter from you. Please keep your letter brief. You can save us time by enclosing a translation of your letter into Japanese, which you can make easily at Google Translate, then copy, paste, and print the result to attach to each copy of your English version. Machine translations are imperfect so be sure to send your English version in case we need to tidy up the Japanese. If you send only English, we’ll translate it to Japanese and include your information that the recipient can use to respond later if they would like. No guarantee on that, of course, and any replies will probably arrive months or possibly more than a year later. We’ll translate replies from Japanese to English.

- Write your email address on the package. The most efficient way for us to keep in touch with you, and track the status of your package once we receive it, is via your email address. Please write it on the outside of your package so we can communicate with you without opening the package.
Please ship your package to my office:

Jason Kelly
Helping Angels : Socks for Japan
Plaza Kei 101
Wakamatsu-cho 615-6
Sano, Tochigi 327-0846

Thank you for your support! When your package arrives, we’ll send a note to you at the email address you wrote on it.

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