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Real estate groups organize Japan relief efforts

Dead and missing exceed 20,000

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In the wake of a devastating 9.0 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami in Japan, some real estate groups are organizing relief efforts for the country's short- and long-term needs. Allen Okamoto, broker-owner of real estate and insurance agency T. Okamoto & Co. in San Francisco and founding chair of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) has set up a relief fund through the association to assist people in the country's Tohuku region rebuild their homes.  "I am currently involved with several relief efforts by different organizations. All of the other organizations are dealing with the immediate needs of the victims such as food, water and clothing. Since the Asian Real Estate Association of America is a real estate-related organization I felt it only proper that we help with the long-term needs (of) rebuilding homes," Okamoto said."We hope that over the year we will generate a lot of donations as the people of Japan surely need it. The devastati...