HONOLULU — Hawaii business leaders, members of the Japanese American community, Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz and Japan Consul General Yoshihiko Kamo have convened to organize a coordinated, statewide effort to collect donations for victims of the earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan.
Schatz, who was asked by Gov. Neil Abercrombie to help coordinate relief efforts, also consulted all four county mayors by telephone.
Hawaii’s largest banking institutions, including American Savings Bank, Bank of Hawaii, Central Pacific Bank, Finance Factors, First Hawaiian Bank, Hawaii National Bank, HomeStreet Bank, Pacific Rim Bank, and Territorial Savings Bank, have all agreed to serve as collection points for monetary donations. This statewide effort, entitled “Aloha for Japan,” builds upon programs already initiated by individual banks to accept donations.
Gary Fujitani, executive vice president of the Hawaii Bankers Association, stated, “The Hawaii banks are pleased to support this humanitarian effort to assist the people of Japan. Hopefully, the public will find it convenient to be able to make a donation at almost 275 bank branches statewide. We are asking customers to make a contribution in any amount to help Japan recover from this tragic disaster.”
Those wishing to contribute to this relief effort can make donations directly with branch tellers at participating banks. Checks should be made payable to “Aloha for Japan.”
This is the first of many initiatives being launched by the Aloha for Japan Committee. Musical concerts and TV programs are also being developed.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims. We stand in support and solidarity with Japan as they begin to recover from this tragedy,” Schatz stated. “I am so pleased with the generosity, cooperation and compassion of so many people throughout Hawaii. In this time of great crisis across the Pacific, it’s time for all of us to show our aloha for Japan.”
Donation checks can also be mailed to: Aloha for Japan, 2454 S. Beretania St., Suite 201, Honolulu, HI 96826.
The Aloha for Japan Committee was inspired in part by the collaborative efforts of local designers who formed a joint venture, GRP (pronounced “group”) HOME Company. This group designed an “ALOHA” T-shirt, incorporating the rising sun, emblematic of the Japanese flag.
These T-shirts, which are already in high demand, can be purchased at the following stores: Hi-Life/Buti-Groove Hawaii, Fitted Hawaii, In4Mation, Aloha Army, and Barefoot League. All proceeds will go towards relief efforts in Japan. For more information, visit www.AlohaforJapan.com.
Some of the business and community leaders who are part of the Aloha for Japan Committee are listed below. Note that many other organizations and individuals throughout Hawaii continue to do their part in supporting and providing aid to disaster victims in Japan. While the list below continues to grow, this is certainly not an exhaustive list of people who have demonstrated aloha for Japan.
Lenny Yajima Andrew, Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii
James Kimo Apana, Maui Japanese Chamber of Commerce
Alan Arakawa, County of Maui
Rick Blangiardi, HawaiiNewsNow
Betty Brow, Bank of Hawaii
Peter Carlisle, City and County of Honolulu
Bernard Carvalho, County of Kauai
Karleen Chinen, Hawaii Herald
Charles Cotton, Clear Channel
Gary Fujitani, Hawaii Bankers Association
Kay Fukumoto, CPA
Robyn Furuya, KZOO
Claire Goldberg, Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel
Robert Harrison, First Hawaiian Bank
Ed Hawkins, Japan-America Society of Hawaii
Peter Ho, Bank of Hawaii
Al Hoffman, Hawaiian Airlines
Don Horner, First Hawaiian Bank
Austin Imamura, Pacific Rim Bank
Wayne T. Ishihara, Honolulu Japanese Chamber of Commerce
Billy Kenoi, County of Hawaii
Phyllis Kihara, KIKU-TV
Kyoko Kimura, Hotel Wailea, Hawaii Tourism Authority, JCCH
Wayne Kirihara, Central Pacific Bank
Gary Kobashigawa, Hawaii National Bank, United Japanese Society of Hawaii
Randy Kurohara, Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Hawaii
Akemi Kurokawa, The Breakers Hotel
Constance Lau, Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc.
Coralie Matayoshi, American Red Cross, Hawaii State Chapter
Richard Matsu, Marukai Corporation
Colbert Matsumoto, Island Insurance Companies
Mike McCartney, Hawaii Tourism Authority
Wayne Miyao, Hiroshima Hawaii Sister State Committee
Kazuo Nakamine, Hawaii Pacific Press
Norman Nakasone, Hawaii United Okinawa Association
Naobumi “Ned” Nomura, Sony Hawaii and Nippon Club
Stephanie Ohigashi, Maui Japanese Chamber of Commerce
Darren Ota, Honolulu Japanese Junior Chamber of Commerce
Kaulana Park, American Savings Bank
Mark Platte, HawaiiNewsNow
Brian Schatz, Hawaii Lt. Governor
Jane Serikaku, Hawaii United Okinawa Association
Pono Shim, Enterprise Honolulu
Akira Shimmyo, Hawaii Hochi
Yukilei Sugimura, Connect LLC
Cyrus Tamashiro, Hawaii United Okinawa Association
Barry Taniguchi, KTA Superstores
Donna Tanoue, Bank of Hawaii
Tyler Tokioka, Island Insurance Companies, Japanese Chamber of Commerce Hawaii
David Uchiyama, Hawaii Tourism Authority
Richard Wacker, American Savings Bank
Terry Wheelock, HawaiiNewsNow
Hoyt Zia, Hawaiian Airlines