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As most of you will know, KGGS undertakes a regular foreign exchange program with Minami High School in Fukushima Prefecture in Japan. We are now in our 18th year of exchange and maintain fond relations with students and staff throughout the year.
Due to their location on the Japanese island of Honshu, the community we know so well has been badly affected by the terrible events of March 11th. We are aware that many students and parents, both past and present, will be concerned for the safety of their friends in Fukushima Prefecture, so are taking the time here to detail what we know and what we plan to do to help.
On the day of the earthquake and the tsunami, Minami High School had a teacher training day so no students were on-site at the time. Although the school and the local area have seen terrible devastation, to the best of our knowledge everyone at the school is safe. Our staff and students have received very touching e-mail updates from their correspondents at Minami, and even in the face of these tragic events their concern and affection for us is humbling. We have included the e-mail sent to us by Midori, a teacher who visited us in July 2010, at the end of this page.
As we receive more information we will do our best to update you through the website. If you have any messages you wish to send to Minami High School, please e-mail them to Mrs Pates at email@example.com and we will try to pass them on as soon as possible.
Sent: 14 March 2011 17:56
To: Mr Burks
Subject: Thank you very much for your great support!
Dear Mr. Burks,
I cannot find words to express my gratitude to you.
Thank you very much for your great sympathy and support.
I'm always impresssed with your broad-mindedness, thoughtfulness and the speed of action.
I'll tell my schoolmaster about your speech to the students, and my schoolmaster will surely tell the students that KGGS teachers and students are thinking of us and encouraging us. That will be a really great help.
In the coastal area of Fukushima pre, the whole towns or almost the whole cities were completely destroyed by tsunami. Up until now over 400 people were killed in Fukushima pref. but still 1,500 peope are missing. Furthermore, three power plants got out of order one after another, and the outer containers which hold the covered nuclear core exploded. Now the third one is worse, and there is a possibility of the uran being melted out. I just pray that this wouldn't happen and hurt people all over Japan and the world !
In another prefecture, 15,000 people are still missing and over 700 people lost their lives. I feel so so sorry for people whose lives were suddenly taken away by the catastrophe, and hundreds of thousands of people who have lost their houses and livelihood.
I still enjoy the mustard you gave me, and I'm glad 8th students remembered the present!
Thank you very much again for your loving thoughts. I always thank you, Your encouraging thoughts is what encourages us and gives us strength.
I pray for no more victims.
I pray for your and KGGS students' great achievements.
with best wishes,
We have received a further e-mail from our friend Matsumoto-san at Minami High School:
Our girls have been interviewed for both BBC Radio and local BBC Television today explaining our close friendship with Minami High School.
KGGS has been raising money through a number of events and we intend to send the proceeds of our fundraising efforts straight to Minami High School to distribute as they see fit in their local community.
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