April 1, 2011 Helping Japan, SUU and Dixie Direct

Jen Ford (McBride) July 1990 View along the Eastern Coast of Japan near Ishinomaki

21 years ago, I was in Ishinomaki, Japan as a Summer Foreign Exchange Student with the Lions Club Exchange program. 21 years ago, I never thought that I would be putting together a fundraiser to help raise money for my friends of Ishinomaki. A report I read yesterday stated that Ishinomaki, Japan was untouched by World War II and the last big Tsunami was in 900 AD. It has been over 1000 years since they have faced a disaster of this magnitude.

Ishinomaki, Japan March 15, 2011

I want to do something. I want to help my friends. But what can I do to make a difference?

After a week of blogging and crying, I had to go back to work. I teach 7 classes at Southern Utah University, in Cedar City Utah. I have over 300 students. GREAT STUDENTS, who I love and respect! I shared my desire with my students. Like I said, they are great students and they came up with several great ideas. I loved the slogan School to School. We thought about how SUU could help a school in Ishinomaki. We thought about doing a 5K, putting cans at local businesses to help raise money. We discussed who to work with.

It wasn’t until the end of the week that I thought of my friend Tony and Dixie Direct in St George, Utah.Dixie Direct is a local discount book/card that is sold to help groups raise money for schools. Local Businesses offer promotional deals like 2-4-1 meals, tickets… There are great golf discounts and several restaurants offer 10% off all year. I called Tony last week and he gave me a trunk load of books to sell. The books are $35.00 and we get to keep $17.50. If 100 students sell 1 book each that is 1,750. If all of my students sell just one book that is over $5,000.

This past week students volunteered to sell books to help raise money for Japan. I handed out over 100 books to students so far. And we just started this week. Hopefully we will be able to send a big donation from SUU and Dixie Direct. I will keep you posted on how much we are able to raise and where the money goes!

If anyone is local and is interested in buying a dixie direct book to help us raise money for Japan, feel free to contact me via the contact page and I will get you a dixie direct book.

Dixie Direct Savings Guide

This entry was posted in Ishinomaki, Ishinomaki City, Japan Tsunami 2011, Missing Persons Ishinomaki Japan, Miyagi Prefecture Japan, Sendai Japan Earthquake 2011, Tsunami Ishinomaki 2011. Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to April 1, 2011 Helping Japan, SUU and Dixie Direct

  1. Kevin Staudte says:

    I think your doing a wonderful thing to help the victims in Japan. Not only are you raising money for Japan, but you are raising awareness and getting people involved with the crazy things that happen in this world. Thanks for everything you are doing to help. Your a great person! Sincerely, Kevin Staudte

  2. Jessica Price says:

    I am so honored to be apart of such a large fundraising project as a student at SUU. I as well as many other students have been touched by the news of the tragedy in Ishinomaki, Japan and have agreed to do as much as I can to serve this community in need. Thank you Jen for all of your hard work! I am so grateful to be able to help in this large effort. Together we can make a difference!

  3. Dillon monroe says:

    GO SUU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i cant even imagine how utterly horrific it must be in japan right now and for the past month. after hurricane Katrina his New Orleans i had the opportunity to go down there and help hand out supplies that i and my little brother had collected for them. it was close to a month after the hurricane before we made it down there and every thing was still in complete disarray. It must be hell in japan. my heart goes out to them.

  4. joshua says:

    wow. we have raised a lot of votes. This is crazy!

  5. Jason Carlile says:

    I can’t imagine knowing people there and seeing this disaster happen. I would do everything i could do as well. Your doing a great job, and you will be blessed for your efforts.

  6. Jackie Coons says:

    You have been such a great example to me, trying to help out with Japan. I never thought I would find myself trying to help other people in a country I have never been to, but you really helped me to realize that just the littlest things will make a difference. Japan needs all the help they can get, and I want to thank you for teaching me that principle. You are such a great example to me as a teacher, I have learned so much from you, you may never know or understand; so thank you!

  7. Shelley Whittaker says:

    I bet that was such a fun experience to be a foreign exchange student over there. Once in a lifetime opportunity. But at the same time, my heart goes out to everyone in Japan. Especially the ones you personally knew. It has a whole new meaning when it hits close to your heart.

  8. Blake Thompson says:

    I feel very appreciative to have a professor that is willing to help anyone in need. No matter if it were Japan, or any where else in the world I know that Jen McBride would have done this for anyone. It is an even more powerful thing that she has been apart of the japanese community. Showing her love for this country makes it grow for not only me but for everyone she helped.
    Thank You for doing everything in your power that you can!

  9. Jayli Zingelman says:

    I am so glad that i got to help with this fundraiser. Sometimes i think a lot of us students didn’t realize what we were doing when we would vote countless times everyday but after watching the You-tube video you posted above I am so glad that we won that money for Japan and for the town and people you got to associate with!

  10. Amanda Ewell says:

    It’s crazy to think about that such a small group of students can make such a big impact. If people everywhere could be as inspired as you are to do all they can, Japan would be incredibly helped. Thank you for your example!

  11. I’m so thankful that you are so passionate about helping Japan. I have friends serving missions there and friends that are preparing to go serve out there and I know they would all be just as appreciative, if not more, than I am. I’m so glad that I have been able to participate in the fund raising with Dixie Direct. I know that ever little bit counts and we can seriously make a difference!! Thanks for the opportunity to help out!

  12. Tara Reese says:

    woohoo we did it! thank you Jen for giving me a chance to help the people in Japan in such a simple and easy way. I am glad that we won the money and it is nice to know it will be going to students who need it so much. Even after all that has and is still going on in Japan the people still find ways to be happy and positive; they have inspired me to look for the good in everything, every second of my day.

  13. Kayla Christensen says:

    First of all, I want to say, I love your picture. ;) Secondly, the other picture, of all the devastation was incredible…I don’t think I’d be able to survive in a place that looked like that. I’m sooo excited that you put together this fund for Japan. You’re incredible, Jen, actually being active about something you care about and stepping up to make a difference, I admire you a lot. That must take a ton of courage and motivation. Go you! and go SUU!!

  14. Kyle Martin says:

    Hearing your personal stories about the time that you had spent in Ishinomaki, Japan made helping raise money for the people in Japan so much more easier. Whenever anything gets personal is when the greatest of work is achieved.

  15. Sydney Dreibelbis says:

    I’m so happy I was in your class and able to be a part of this fundraiser. I can’t imagine what went through your mind when you heard of everything happened and personally knowing the people there. I didn’t realize the effect of what happened until we started fund raising and i researched it, and I was so glad I could help in any way. I’m very honored to be a part of a group of students so willing to put ourselves out there and help ones the most in need.

  16. Steven Warby says:

    It was fun to be a part of this fundraiser for Japan. It is just another example of what people can do when they work together and have a strong commitment to what they want.

  17. Eric Hoyle says:

    It’s been a privilige to help Japan out. It’s good to see that we can still make a little difference in this world.

  18. Amber Sharkey says:

    I think its great to care about people who have cared for you. I think that helping those in need is great and that those who need it more should recieve the help they need. I think this fundraiser is a great way to connect us to the rest of the world and make us feel like we are making a difference is some way. I would feel bad if I wasnt able to help someone in need. We should all try to help those in need and this is a great way.

  19. Maycee L. Barton says:

    I felt like Dixie Direct idea was a very interesting idea, but I still liked it in the end! Dixie Direct provides so many great deals for the people of Southern Utah, and thankfully they were willing to provide the books for the fund raiser! I find that WAY awesome, and not only that but the chance to win $1,000 dollars for Japan as well… I think it has been a great project you have been taking upon yourself Jen!! Thankfully Japan has someone like you, with such a big heart!! :)

  20. Mara W says:

    It was an amazing experience to help Japan out! I loved every minute of fundraising and I know that our small donation will help in some way!

  21. Sabrina Hernandez says:

    This was a great idea to do. Its easy money to try to win 1000 for japan. Great to see that lots of students participated and signed up to Dixie Direct.

  22. Ashley Blake says:

    Jen – you really inspire me with the way you live your life! I am sure that it was an amazing experience for you to be a foreign exchange student in Japan. You can definitely tell that you developed a love for the people and the country while you were there. I think it really hits home for you because you were there. I am grateful that you want to do something to help the people and I hope that many people, including myself will help in any way that we can!

  23. DaNeil Martinez says:

    So glad we were able to do this. Thank you for the opportunity!

  24. Holden wagstaff says:

    I cannot imagine how you must feel to see a place and people you loved be effected by this disaster. I spent two years among the Cambodian people and i do not know how i feel i had to witness something like this. My prayers go out to those people.

  25. Taylor Jensen says:

    Jen, thank you so much for letting us, the kids in your classes, be a part of this. I have friends and family living in Japan so I feel the pain that people are feeling. I wish that I could have just bought all of the books. My thanks and prayers go to you and people who are helping in whatever way they can.

  26. kc fotheringham says:

    woot. i am so glad suu won this to help a great cause. i wish everyone in japan the best of luck and hope. stay positive. you are in our prayers!

  27. Anthony Guerrero says:

    Jen, I hope that we got to a reasonable number for you! I tried to sell as many as I could, but I only got one to my friend. I’m just glad that I could help in any way! Let’s keep raising some money to help!

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