One of the most amazing projects was with National Azabu Supermarket.
National has a long standing relationship with Rabbi Edery and Chabad House of Japan.
When the Tsunami happened the Rabbi got many phone calls and emails from people who wanted to donate things to the people of Tohoku.He realized that there were many people who wanted to help but didn’t know where to or how. He thought of a plan: he asked National to put very large collection baskets outside the store for people to drop their donations into. One one for clothes, one for dry foods, the third was for everything else. National offered their truck to the Rabbi to bring the relief up North.
After several days, a huge amount of donations were collected, and Rabbi Edery drove all night and brought it to the house of a friend in Iwanuma. This large house served as the unloading area, and also the place where things were divided according to size and category. For example, baby clothes, shoes, towels, coats,blankets, food etc. Then city office personnel would come and pick up large amount of items to the city halls where survivors were living for the time being. Sometimes the relief was brought directly to the centers.
The amount of items collected grew day by day, to such an extent that Rabbi rented a 2 ton truck, bi-weekly, for months and months.
The store also put charity boxes near the cash register so that would help the Rabbi cover the truck rental and gasoline cost.
The president of National Azabu and the manager were devoted partners in Rabbi Edery and Chabad Japan’s relief work. It gave them great satisfaction and joy to help the people of Tohoku.
The huge amount of relief brought on a weekly basis, gave a strong message to the people: ‘’You are not alone, we are thinking of you and will help as much as we can’’.
National also partnered with the Rabbi with food items that the Rabbi bought for events, such as high quality beef steaks, Hagen Dasz ice cream.