Special Message from Governor Jack Markell
Our state has long had a close relationship with Miyagi Prefecture, beginning with Governor Castle and evolving into a formal sister-state partnership under Governor Carper in 1997. But the relationships go well beyond our governors to where it really matters: the people of Delaware and Miyagi have built lasting and meaningful friendships over the years.
Our businesses have worked together to help expand our markets and employ more people, both in Delaware and Miyagi.
Parents from Delaware and Miyagi have hosted our children, taking them in as our own. Teachers and classmates from both states have helped our students understand each of our cultures and each other as mentors and friends.
I'm extremely proud of the outpouring of support that we've heard from Delawareans. Many of us, across the state, want to reach across the ocean to help.
Delaware is the state of neighbors - thank you for your willingness to help our neighbors on the other side of the world.
On March 11, 2011, Miyagi Prefecture in northeastern Japan was hit by a major earthquake and tsunami, causing widespread destruction. In the days following this event, the State of Delaware, recognizing its special relationship with Miyagi, set up a fund at the Delaware Community Foundation to help with the relief and rebuilding effort in Miyagi.
Delaware donations to Miyagi have focused on three priorities:
• Helping children who lost one or both parents in the disaster,
• Paying for immediate needs after the earthquake, and
• Helping to pay for infrastructure projects in the Prefecture.
The Delaware Fund for Miyagi was supported by individuals, families, businesses, and other organizations. Delaware schools and students hosted individual fundraisers, coin drives, bake sales, and other fundraising efforts. The collective efforts of Delaware’s school students added up to thousands of dollars to help their neighbors in Japan.
In late October, Delaware Secretary of State Jeffrey Bullock visited Miyagi on behalf of Governor Jack Markell and the people of Delaware. He placed white flowers at one of the many disaster areas in Sendai, the capital of Miyagi Prefecture, as a sign of respect. He also met with the prefecture’s governor Yoshihiro Murai, presenting him with a letter from Governor Markell.