Quake-hit Wajima City to accept more volunteers during spring holidays

The city of Wajima in Ishikawa Prefecture, central Japan, plans to accept more volunteer workers during the upcoming spring holidays as part of efforts to recover from the January 1 earthquake.

The increase comes as more residents are expected to need help in cleaning up their homes.

The city's social welfare council says it will accept volunteers every day from April 26 through May 6. Volunteers are usually allowed to work four days a week, from Friday to Monday.

Officials also plan to increase the number of volunteers to be recruited to up to around 95 people a day, more than double the current number.

The council says it had received only several calls per day from residents requesting volunteers, but the number exceeded 40 on Saturday ahead of the holiday period.

Officials are calling on residents not to hesitate in making requests, saying they have added five more telephones at their call center.

A senior official of the council, Araki Tadatoshi, said volunteers coming to Wajima may experience some inconvenience but they do not have to worry about finding toilets or places to take a rest.