The power of the people gave us hope – Japan Appeal


The outcome of the Stay Strong Japan – Tsunami Appeal which recently took place in St Albans is incredible! On Thursday 31st March, the £17,335.84 raised from the appeal was matched pound for pound by the Eisai Company in Hatfield. This brought the total to a whopping £34,711.68.  The cheque was then presented to the British Red Cross.

Marie Otchi, one of the five organisers, says; “It has been such an emotional two weeks. First we saw the surreal images on BBC from Japan, then the power of the people gave us hope. We will rebuild our country again.”

This news has especially been welcomed by Councillor Beric Read, Deputy Mayor of St Albans.  Japan has played a huge part in Councillor Read’s past and he has a great love for the country. He enthusiastically attended the fundraising event  and his positive presence was especially enjoyed by the Japanese Community.

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross, click;

or email Marie Otchi on who will welcome any comments or donations for the Japan cause.

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Maria Larmer lives in St Albans and is married with four children. She works as a Freelance Writer, English Language Teacher and Teaching Assistant. She has lived in Auckland, New Zealand for 9 years and prior to that in France, Germany, Austria, Edinburgh, London and Ireland. Her diary-writing has featured on 'The Wild Geese' Channel 4 and Radio Verulam. She has written for Hertfordshire Life magazine, Go Camping magazine, Camping magazine, The Catholic Times, St Albans & Harpenden Review, New Zealand Times, The New Beacon, My Weekly and various websites. She can be contacted on