Donations for Japan relief to be collected Saturday

DOWNEY - The Downey Police Department, in conjunction with the Fire Department and volunteers from a number of city groups, will host a 'fill-the-bucket' fundraiser for the American Red Cross relief efforts in Japan on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Stonewood Center.The event will go on, rain or shine. All of the donations will be directed to the American Red Cross for disaster relief efforts in Japan. Monetary donations are the best form of assistance for the Japan disaster and will be forwarded immediately. The fill-the-bucket staff members will only accept monetary donations. Food and clothing for the Japanese disaster will not be accepted at this event. Mayor Luis Marquez and the entire Downey City Council support this event and have great concern for all of those who have been so adversely impacted by the devastating earthquake and subsequent tsunami. All of those who visit the volunteers will be given emergency preparedness information (English or Spanish). Japan devoted a considerable amount of resources and training time preparing for emergencies. Fortunately, some of the Japanese were able to live through the disasters. However, thousands are now suffering, despite their best efforts. Fresh water, food, fuel and shelter from the weather are now in short supply in the Japanese disaster area. Many of the disaster survivors are now waiting for precious supplies, in long lines, in cold weather conditions. Experts are predicting a major earthquake will occur in Southern California sometime in the next several years, so now is the time for all members of the Downey community to firm up their emergency plans, to assemble emergency kits and supplies and to improve their awareness of the hazards of living in earthquake country. Experts predict a major earthquake will likely result in the loss of utilities and food supplies for much of the Southern California area. All transit routes are also expected to be heavily impacted by a severe earthquake. Everyone should have emergency supplies (water, food, communications, tools, first aid materials and shelter) to last seven days and a plan to live through the immediate aftermath of a disastrous earthquake. The fill-the-bucket event will be similar to other fundraisers held in the Stonewood Center parking lots. Volunteers will be easy to identify and will stand at the four major entry points to the mall. They will be collecting cash, check or change donations using special Red Cross buckets. For the safety of everyone involved in this event, please drive extra cautiously when in 'fill-the-bucket' areas. The volunteer groups committed to the fundraiser (so far) are the Downey Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), the Emergency Preparedness Committee members, members of the Downey Fire and Police Explorer Posts and the Warren Red Cross club. Questions or comments about this fundraising event or emergency preparedness can be directed to

********** Published: March 17, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 48