Where We Work


Perched on the Ring of Fire, Japan is one of the most seismically active countries in the world. While Japan has one of the highest capacities to manage emergencies, the unprecedented scale of the 9.0-magnitude earthquake, tsunami and subsequent Fukushima nuclear crisis in March 2011 warranted international support.

International Medical Corps’ emergency response team was on the ground 48 hours after the earthquake and tsunami. Since that time, we’ve worked in support of the Government of Japan and local partner organizations to help communities impacted by the 2011 disaster fully recover. In April 2016, we had a team on the ground again in response to two earthquakes that rocked Kumamoto prefecture. The two earthquakes together killed 49 people and injured 1,400 and forced 181,000 people to evacuate their homes. Many moved into evacuation centers set up in schools, community centers and other available buildings. International Medical Corps, together with local authorities and organizations, responded to the needs of those displaced by the twin Kumamoto earthquakes, reaching approximately 2,500 people with relief and recovery efforts across 20 evacuation centers.


127.1 million

Life expectancy

84 years 

Median Age

46.1 Years 

The Challenges

Families Remain Displaced

One year after the 2016 Kumamoto earthquake, 47,000 people remain displaced

Aftershocks Continue

Nearly 4,300 tremors and aftershocks have occurred in the year since the quake

Our Response

Today, International Medical Corps continues to collaborate with local organizations that  provide for the immediate needs of families and individuals still displaced by the earthquake. In addition to providing direct services, we are helping to build the capacity of local response organizations so they are better able to respond to a future crisis.

Our Impact

people reached who were affected by the Kumamoto earthquake in 2016

Japan After the Earthquakes

Kumamoto, Japan—Kuramoto Shieko, 85, was in the bath when the ground beneath her began to violently shake, rattling the frame of her house. She and her husband rushed outside as quickly as they could. It would be Kuramoto’s last time in her home, which her father had carefully built more than 130 years ago.




Help Save Lives