This is how PSP Children’s Foundation started

On March 11th, 2011, the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami happened which killed 15,900 people in Japan. We wanted to help people in some way and decided to donate to the Red Cross. However, instead of just donating, we have asked other people to donate to the Red Cross and send us a receipt. We told everyone, we will match that receipt when we donate. We allocated $2,000 for this matching, but we started receiving receipts. The $2,000 donation was made within a day. So we decided to increase the amount to $5,000. In the end, people sent us over $10,000 in receipts and we donated $5,000 to the Red Cross.

Needless to say, we were very thankful and amazed by the amount of generosity from people in the US. We started thinking about how we can do more. So we started communicating with people in the Tohoku area. Mayumi Nakamura, former President of Pacific Software Publishing, Inc., visited Tohoku and started a dialogue with the school district in Tohoku.

We set a plan in action to bring 10 children and 2 teachers from Tohoku to stay in Seattle for 10 days. Those children lost both or one of their parents in the earthquake and tsunami. Pacific Software Publishing, Inc. paid for all of the trip fees and we asked families here to help them stay at their home. A local school, Bellevue Children’s Academy, opened their school for them to study while they were here at no charge. Companies like Microsoft and Google invited students to their campus and provided them with a tour. Microsoft gave each child a Xbox game system to take home. The Seattle Mariners invited them to a game and gave them a tour of the stadium. Puget Sound Coach Line took them sightseeing to various places such as Mt. Rainier.

Children who came over were shy and did not express their feelings much when they arrived. By the time they were leaving, they were all smiling and talking. When it was time to depart, they cried because they did not want to be separated with their new family in Seattle. We are thankful to all of the people and companies that supported this venture. We did this twice and we felt we have helped in these children’s recovery effort.

Since this was done as a private effort, we could not issue any receipts or expense any of the things we did. We started to think about creating a non-profit organization to do such things. This was the inspiration behind the creation of PSP Children’s Foundation.