Major U.S. Charity Arrives in Tokyo on Valentine's Day to Bring Message of Hope for Animal Victims of 2011 Earthquake

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American Humane Association
Acting as Ambassador for Thousands of Americans
Who Opened Their Hearts to Help Animals after Disaster

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 14, 2012 – American Humane Association, a major 135-year-old United States-based charity dedicated to protecting children and animals, has arrived in Tokyo on Valentine's Day to bring a message of hope and help to the remaining animal victims of the 2011 earthquake.

American Humane Association President and CEO Dr. Robin Ganzert, whose organization has already sent a shipment of supplies and financial donations immediately following the earthquake on March 11, 2011, is conducting site visits and meeting privately with leaders from Japanese relief agencies that have been helping animals left homeless by the disaster nearly one year ago in order to determine the continuing need to shelter and save the lives of thousands of animals still in jeopardy.

American Humane Association has two major goals in coming to Japan: First, to arrange a schedule of financial support to those groups that are caring for and trying to help animals left homeless by the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster. And second, to extend an offer to share the organization's more than 100 years of experience in disaster relief to help Japan's communities prepare for and protect children and animals against future disasters. Since 1916, American Humane Association has operated the internationally renowned Red Star™ Animal Emergency Services program. Red Star rescue services have been involved not only in nearly every major relief in the United States over the past century, but major international relief efforts, including rescuing horses on the battlefields of Europe during World War I and the efforts to save and shelter animals following the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. American Humane Association's Red Star program is an acknowledged leader in disaster preparedness and has also compiled and is offering to translate into Japanese a series of prevention tips to protect children, animals, families and communities from hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, and other disasters.

"When the disasters occurred in Japan, our hearts went out to all the communities affected by those devastating events, and we immediately initiated contact with our international partners to discuss how we could help," said American Humane Association President and Chief Executive Officer Robin R. Ganzert, Ph.D. "To help with the immediate need, we sent a shipment of shelter supplies and a one-million yen financial grant to local relief agencies in Japan. Much good has been accomplished by the noble work of the local Japanese relief groups, but nearly a year later there is still much to do and thousands of animals who still need our help. We are here now on Valentine's Day to bring a message of love, hope, and help to Japan and its most precious treasures. In this way, we hope to help improve current conditions for those still in need, and better protect entire communities in the future."

American Humane Association would like to give special thanks to Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ for hosting the meetings with local relief groups, as well as members of the U.S. Embassy, the U.S.-Japan Council, and other important organizations interested in the welfare of the world's children and animals.

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