Hosting and guiding Mr. Nduna were the people of Tohoku HELP, an ecumenical agency established immediately after last year’s disaster, which has been performing and coordinating a dizzying array of relief activities in the disaster region.
Mr. Nduna’s first day in Tōhoku began with a visit to the Food Radiation Measurement Center, which is funded by several ACT members (UMCOR, United Church of Canada, EDK-DKH).
In introducing staff and operations the Center’s supervising director, Rev. Chihiro SAIGUSA, explained that food, crop, soil water and breastmilk samples are brought in by members of the public, often from as far away as Fukushima.
(Rev. Chihiro SAIGUSA (left) and Tohoku HELP staff Ms. ENDO (right) interpret a spectrometer graph for John Nduna and Noriko LAO (UMCOR))
In addition to the challenge of handling scientific instruments and technical data, Center staff must also be prepared to attend to the complex emotional and spiritual needs of visitors, especially when measuerment results indicate cause for concern.
(David McIntosh, NCC-JEDRO staff)