Popular all-girl idol group AKB48 will donate another 585,259,888 yen to disaster-stricken areas in the Tohoku area. Members of the group held a special meet-and-greet event for fans at Seibu Dome in Saitama Prefecture last Saturday night. They also performed their new single, “GIVE ME FIVE!”
AKB48 has already donated 668,916,085 yen to disaster relief. The donations come from their “Dareka no Tame ni” project. Also, the group has donated a part of their CD sales since last September. The funds will be delivered to the disaster areas through the Red Cross, Sports Nippon reported.
In addition to financial support, the girls have visited the disaster-hit areas since May 2011, holding mini-concerts, greeting fans and other seasonal events such as Christmas parties.
At the Saitama "handshake" event, AKB48 member Mariko Shinoda, 27, said that "We are limited in what we can do, but I believe that we can raise people’s awareness that Tohoku people still need support. We haven't forgotten them and we are going to continue our support."
AKB48 will donate 10 transportation vehicles each to Iwate, Fukushima, and Miyagi for new students. The group will also hold a charity performance on March 11 to mark the first anniversary of the Tohoku disaster. On that day, AKB's sister units -- SKE48 will perform in Nagoya, NMB48 in Osaka, and HKT48 in Fukuoka.© Japan Today