Stevens-Henager students knit scarves for Japanese orphans
Respiratory therapy students at Stevens-Henager College have hand-knitted more than 150 scarves for children in Japan who were orphaned or displaced by the 2011 tsunami and nuclear disaster. The students are sending the scarves, along with hand-written notes and photos of themselves, to Global Mission, a Japanese nonprofit organization. "It's a tradition in the medical community to find opportunities to give back," said Troy Gerrard, associate dean for respiratory therapy, in a statement. "Acts of charity not only benefit the community, but our students also learn how to be more compassionate caregivers in the process." Shipping costs are being covered by Interac America, a corporation that recruits educators to teach English in schools in Japan. The company suggested donating the scarves through Global Mission, which works with Buddhist missions that house and educate orphaned children, the college said. Japan this year marked the second anniversary of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that left nearly 19,000 people dead or missing and displaced more than 300,000. Reactors at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plants melted down after cooling systems were disabled by the tsunami. Others interested in donating to Japanese families displaced by the 2011 disaster can contact the Japanese Red Cross at http://www.jrc.or.jp/english/.