King County employees donated $287,000 to disaster victims in Japan and New Zealand

Friday, June 3, 2011

Pyne Gould Building, Christchurch, New Zealand
destroyed along with 180 downtown buildings in
February 2011 earthquake.  Photo by Gabriel.
From the office of the King County Executive

King County employees have once again demonstrated their giving spirit. During a recent campaign, 458 employees donated more than 8,100 hours of accrued leave to disaster victims in Japan and New Zealand. The leave was converted into a cash donation of $286,815 for the Red Cross. The money will be used for continuing earthquake and tsunami relief efforts.

“This outpouring of support for our neighbors across the Pacific is another example of the determination to make a difference,” said County Executive Dow Constantine. “I am so proud of King County employees for donating their hard-earned leave to help the people of Japan and New Zealand as they continue to recover from these tragic events.”

The leave donation program was authorized by Executive Constantine in March, shortly after a massive earthquake and resulting tsunami devastated Japan. Because that disaster followed so closely on the heels of an earthquake in New Zealand, King County opted to combine efforts and help the victims of both disasters.

A similar donation program was enacted by King County after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. After that disaster, 367 King County employees donated more than 5,500 hours of leave, resulting in a gift of nearly $200,000 to Global Impact, a federation of 55 international aid agencies that provided desperately needed humanitarian assistance to Haiti.


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