Pagans Raise Over 30K for Japan Relief

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  March 27, 2011 — 8 Comments

The initiative started by Peter Dybing for the Pagan community to raise 30,000 dollars for Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières has reached and surpassed its goal! Here’s a statement from Peter Dybing on this achievement.

Today the Pagan Japan Relief Project prevailed in its effort to raise $30,000.00 for Doctors Without Borders. This achievement belongs to the entire community. While there are many examples of individuals and organizations that established efforts in support of this project, it is the community as a whole that has spoken; declaring it’s allegiance to the principle that we are one human family.

Already First Giving has distributed funds to Doctors Without Borders in support of their relief efforts. As little as $3.00 purchased a blanket for those without shelter. The small sum of $5.00 obtained medications for individuals unable to afford them. Today there are survivors receiving critical care as a result of this effort.

This project also represents an important moment in Pagan history. Working together across intrafaith boundaries this community has demonstrated the maturation that has occurred over the past few decades. We have established that we are an effective and unified religious community that can respond to world events, take action when necessary and work together in support of achievable goals. Gone is the quietly whispered sentiment that Pagans do not work together or that Pagans do not give to charity.

Pagans from all over the country gave from the heart in support of this effort. About a week ago I received an email from a community member who was attempting to figure out how to make the FirstGiving site charge their ATM card $5.00 as that was the balance in their account. It is this ethic of giving all that we can that has so impressed me. Many community members have given multiple times to the effort. We should all be proud of these incredible expressions of intent, compassion, self-sacrifice, and determination to make a difference. Collectively, we have manifested change in the world and our community all at once.

As facilitator of this project it has been my privilege to witness our community pull together in this effort. Humbled is the only word I can think of that expresses my feelings about this effort. Humbled viewing this achievement humbled to be a member of this community and humbled to be allowed to play a small part in this historic response.

Pagans we are strong, we are focused, we are effective, we have proven that there are no limits on what this community can accomplish and we deserve to be Proud.

In Service and Gratitude,
Peter Dybing

In addition, here’s a short statement from Selena Fox of Circle Sanctuary, who was instrumental in spreading the word and making contacts within the Pagan community for this to happen.

“The combined efforts of Pagans of many paths & places in giving, in expressing support, and in networking has not only raised money to help one of the international organizations engaged in relief efforts in Japan, but it has raised consciousness that Pagans can work together for the greater good.”

That the Pagan community has been able to collectively raise over $30,000 dollars, much more if you could count donations to other initiatives and organizations that Pagans have been involved in, is a monumental achievement. My personal thanks to all of you who became a part of this effort, and not only helped the people of Japan and a very worthy organization, but also showed that we can collectively pull together to accomplish great things. To the people of Japan, the Pagan community stands in solidarity with you at this time of crisis and tragedy.

Jason Pitzl-Waters


  • From the entire Pagans Tonight Crew and the Witch School Family, we want to thank Peter Dybing for organizing this, and everyone who participated and donated. I thought the Proud Pagan Podcasters did a amazing job streaming the word. There was a lot of Social effort, and it is something worth learning from. I saw something spark, and I loved being part of this.

  • Let us now focus on what this will be used for, and show respect as is each our way. This is something to take pride in, But please do not tarnish this with exessive ego strokeing.

  • I'm proud of us and grateful to Peter Dybing for pulling this together. Even though Japan is a wealthy industrialized nation, the north, where the earthquake and tsuanami hit, is a region of country affected by the movement of young people to the bright lights and better jobs in the big cities. So while Japan usually does a pretty good job of taking care of its own, this time help is truly needed from outside to assist the frail and elderly with their serious health-care and survival needs.

  • She Szimanski

    I believe I am relieved that the greater pagan community was able to do something as a collective and endlessly thankful to Peter Dybing being the impetus that made it possible.

    I take courses at a community college in Northern Michigan and volunteer at a state prison nearby. For an assignment in public speaking I chose to speak on the state funded programs that I volunteer for at the prison. After my speech I got several questions about Christian faith based programs at the prison and when I politely told the students that I was not involved in any of those because I believed in the separation of church and state I was told vehemently that no one volunteers or gives to charity unless they are told to do it by their Christian church. The prison also pushes the faith based programs and I was told by staff that it was because they don’t get much help and the church people will only help if they can proselytize in the process. My thanks also go out to everyone else who donated for being the exceptions to these distasteful rules.

  • I saw a program that illustrates just that, that Jews have been giving a portion of their food and coinage (alms for the poor) way before Jesus showed up, as a community basket.

  • Roe Griffith

    OH YES!!!!!!

  • I'm very happy that I could help, but I'm even more happy that people who really need the aid are able to get it. It warms my heart that we could come together and help like this. 🙂

  • This is for helping individuals who were effected by this earthquake, not for helping the nation.
    It is possable to dislike aspects of a culture and still like the individuals in it.
    It is possable for the nation to be rich, But overtaxed when it is a time sensitive event.
    And name one nation who has a history with no blemishes be it for horrid act or worse yet,though harder to trace via inaction in a time of need.
    help the people today and bish about the politics and nationalism tomarrow