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Puget Sound area groups stand up for Japan's disaster victims

Masami Yamamoto
Courtesy JACL Olympia
Members of the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) of Olympia rally support earlier this week for the victims of last Friday's earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Rallies, memorials and interfaith prayer gatherings are scheduled around Puget Sound today and through the weekend, as people gather in support of the victims of last week's earthquake and tsunami in northeast Japan.

Among the events tonight, Interfaith Works in Olympia hosts an evening of reflection, one week after the disaster, with organizers encouraging donations for relief agencies working in Japan. It begins at 7 p.m.

This past Wednesday, another Olympia organization rallied support downtown, according to The Olympian's Matt Batcheldor:

“By giving and giving now, they will … save lives,” said Reiko Callner, former president of the Olympia Japanese American Citizens League, which sponsored the event, along with the Olympia-Yashiro Sister City Association.


Seattle Coalition Plans Saturday Event 

Governor Chris Gregoire and Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn will join with Japan's Consul General Kiyokazu Ota at the Seattle Center tomorrow, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., as part of a remembrance organized by Seattle Japan Relief, a new coalition. 

The group is highlighting the work of Red Cross, Peace Winds America and YMCA, who are among the groups working directly with victims. The event will offer information for those who wish to take part. 

The public officials will gather to ring the Kobe Bell, a gift from Seattle's sister city in Japan for the 1962 World's Fair.