Now for a serious note. For the first ten years of starting and developing the business, it was very rewarding to nurture the sense that we were part of the community. We provided jobs for local people; we provided a service for local residents. The transition to the website changed that community from simply the local geographic one to the increasingly worldwide one where our common interest focused around the vehicle, but the lessons we learned about being part of the community, although now larger, were still important to us. Words cannot express the heartfelt concern that we feel for our Japanese friends. The current count is
11,378 dead and 16,541 still missing
19,019 houses completely destroyed.
172,415 people evacuated.
A nuclear crisis relentlessly weighing on their minds.
Many people are losing their jobs.
We would like to thank all of our friends and customers all over the world for contributing to the success of our business and putting us into the fortunate position to be able to offer some help. We will be donating $2000 per month for the next three months to the Japanese chapter of the Red Cross Society www.jrc.or.jp/english/relief/l4/Vcms4_00002070.html We would like to encourage others, both customers and businesses, to contribute a little if possible.

We would like to share a little Van-Cafe history. No one individual has been more instrumental to us in expanding our business in Japan than Mr. Take Uemura. Besides being a good friend, over the past 8 years he has coordinated large shipments of parts to the many members of the Vanagon club, VNMC, in Japan. He has assimilated, screened, and translated as many as 50 orders at a time, making our job easy to then individually box these orders, pile them on pallets, ship them to Japan, where he then distributed them to the many club members. We appreciate all of our Japanese customers for their patronage of our business both through the VNMC group orders and also to the many individuals that we communicate with and do business with directly. Our wishes are with all of you. We know you face a lot of difficulties but we know you will work together and get through this.