Thursday 21 April 2011
Author Maureen Johnson rallies fans, fellow writers to support Japan disaster relief by ShelterBox USA
Using her popular blog and a Twitter campaign, noted young adult author Maureen Johnson rallied fans, fellow authors and publishing house HarperCollins to raise $30,000 to support ShelterBox USA’s disaster relief efforts in Japan and other countries worldwide.
ShelterBox USA is the American affiliate of ShelterBox, an international disaster relief organization, an international disaster relief organization that provides shelter and life-saving equipment to disaster survivors. Johnson’s campaign to support ShelterBox in Japan followed a previous effort to help ShelterBox deliver aid to New Zealand following a devastating earthquake there in February.
“The response from readers, friends and colleagues has been phenomenal!” Johnson said. “My friend is a volunteer who delivers ShelterBoxes to disaster survivors around the world. This is true, life-saving stuff, hand-delivered by volunteers trained in survival techniques. When you see the news out of Japan and other disaster zones, you know how much ShelterBox supplies are needed.”
Johnson and dozens of authors such as Judy Blume, Robin Wasserman and Jackson Pierce contributed prizes to encourage donations to the cause. The prizes included autographed copies of the authors’ books and advance copies of new releases. Readers jumped at the chance to enter the contest while supporting a worthy cause.
The successful fundraising efforts were made possible through the reach of Johnson’s blog and her “fanatically active” Twitter life. “I say I live in New York City, but actually, I live on Twitter, and won Mashable’s ‘Most Interesting Twitter User to Follow’ award, which is both awesome and deeply sad,” Johnson said.
Johnson is a New York Times bestselling author whose novels include Suite Scarlett, Scarlett Fever, Girl At Sea, 13 Little Blue Envelopes, and The Key to the Golden Firebird. She lives in New York City.