IsraAID's mission is to effectively and efficiently respond to international humanitarian disasters and development challenges by utilizing innovative solutions and a network of highly trained professionals to assist and work alongside communities worldwide.
Mar 19, 2014

Japan Youth Leadership 2014 report

IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo


In 2014 IsraAID is building its plan for the new year following its 2013 activity.  

These activities include: intensive vocational trainings in partnership with Hilton Tokyo, group building activities for High school students in Watari, leadership training for High school students from Futaba- Machi, a town evacuated from Fukushima radiation zone, and a community event for in partnership with the staff of Hilton Tokyo.

The activities aim to provide the youth of Tohoku with practical skills for their future including communication skills, service skills, and presentation skills, and a new sense of community.

Summary of activities:

Watari leadership group: 

In January, 14 Watari High School students attended a week long training in Hilton Tokyo. The students all learned different aspects of the hotel, from cooking to speaking to customers, to marketing. The students all received a certificate of their training. 

IsraAID in partnership with the city of Watari and Watari High school conducted intensive leadership trainings on a monthly basis. 14 participants are attending these activities regularly, and the content include: Group building activities, Presentation skills, Communication skills and social responsibility.

Futaba Machi High school

The students of Futaba Machi High School will attend a week long training at the Hilton Tokyo in their upcoming Summer Vacation. The training is provided in join partnership with ADRA Japan.

The trainings provide invaluable skills for the students, bringing one student to decide his future career will be as a Chef. 

The student spoke at the IsraAID event in commemoration of three years since the Tsunami. Speaking at the event was a prime example of the valuable skills learned in the training, not only career wise but in the ability to communicate eloquently with an audience of over 150 people. 

IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID High School Student workshop -Hilton Tokyo
IsraAID 3 Years to Tsunami Student Speaker
IsraAID 3 Years to Tsunami Student Speaker
Feb 18, 2014

Voices Of Tohoku December 2013- February 2014

Voices of Tohoku book presentation
Voices of Tohoku book presentation


During the last 3 months our work has focused on building a sustainable structure for the project that will allow us to run the archive project for years to come in existing and new communities. We are in the process of developing a website for Voices of Tohoku that will share full videos of our archive project online and to the world. Selected interviews will also have English translations, and will be used to raise awareness of this project and of the voices from Tohoku around the world. The website is planned to be completed by the end of February.

We have further continued our process of interviewing, and have collected over 40 interviews for the community archives, making stories of individuals heard, and preserved for the future.

We are organizing an event with a local museum in Ishinomaki that will exhibit the Voices of Tohoku archive in Ishinomaki. The event will be held in late March, and Japan’s national broadcasting channel, NHK, wishes to show the event on the news.


Futaba Machi of Fukushima – This town received an evacuation order from the government after the radiation leak at the Fukushima Daichi Nuclear Power Plant. All 7000 residents are scattered across Japan, in almost every prefecture. With young film artists from Futaba, we have established connections with the local government and NPOs working in Futaba. We plan to continue to increase interviews in this area, and to establish a stable archive that will be easily accessible to all of the evacuees from this area.

Osaka- We are continuing the archiving project with the evacuee mother group in Osaka with the help of local volunteers. Further, we have connected with an NPO that runs education programs for the elderly, who kindlly  agreed to introduce us in their classes, and hopefully connect us to the 20 evacuee participants.

Kyoto- Since 2011, almost 700 families have evacuated to Kyoto. We have partnered with an NPO in Kyoto that supports these families to create a local archive for the evacuee community. 

Ishinomaki City- The connection with the local newspaper has allowed us to continue our project in Ishinomaki. We have interviewed community leaders and influential figures in Ishinomaki, such as the man responsible for the Ganbaro Ishinomaki sign, now a very popular tourist attraction and symbol for relief in Ishinomaki. Andy and Jean Anderson from the Taylor Anderson Fund,, who are important figures in the relationship between the US and Ishinomaki, have also participated in this archive. The local museum that has decided to create the Voices of Tohoku archive in their center is planning an event with us in late-March for the opening of the archive. It will invite local elementary and junior high school students from Ishinomaki and these students will use the videos to learn about their community. This event will be covered on NHK World, one of the most well-known international news programs broadcasted from Japan.

Yamamoto Town- We are continuing to collect stories here, and we have received support and photos from the Yamamoto local government to use in the archive.

Watari- We are continuing to collect stories from residents, and since the archive event in May, the level of awareness of the project has greatly increased. We have distributed most interviews in DVD form to each participant from Watari. We have heard since then that participants are sharing DVDs with one another and learning about each other’s experiences.


Professor of Psychology Ito Takehiko of Wako University has announced that three students from the department of Psychology have decided to write their theses on the interviews and archiving methods of Voices of Tohoku.

Professor Ito Takehiko and Meiji Gakuin University Emeritus Professor Inoue Takayo, have started their research that will integrate the Voices of Tohoku archive, and have told us that they have received funding for this research. Professor Inoue Takayo has talked about the project in academic conferences around Japan twice, and is planning to speak about it again at a conference for psychological aid after the disaster in Kyoto Univeristy in March.

The official Voices of Tohoku book designed by Professor Lei-Mei Julia Chiu and students from Musashino Art University’s social design class is ready for printing, and will be ready by March 11, when we will distribute it to our close partners. It will include 5 interviews in text form from 3 of our communities, and also include over 100 photos of each of the community. This 100-page book will be distributed to each of our archives, and will make stories more accessible for people beyond video archiving. Public distribution of the books is still pending. 


The Voices of Tohoku website, that is being developed with the students of Musashino Art University, will be completed by the end of the month. It will contain over 100 interviews and through JISP’s social media, it will be shared across the world. We have received initial interest from an archiving project in Paris interested in exhibiting this project in their center, and we will continue to look for opportunities to raise awareness of this project around the world.

Volunteers interviewing in Ishinomaki
Volunteers interviewing in Ishinomaki
Archive event with the mayor of Watari
Archive event with the mayor of Watari
Interview with Ishinomaki volunteer worker
Interview with Ishinomaki volunteer worker
Feb 18, 2014

Summary of activities Nov 2013- Feb 2014 and work plan for 2014

Debriefing 1
Debriefing 1


February 10th, 2014

Leyte, Philippines



On November 8th 2013, the Philippines were devastated by what is being called the most powerful typhoon to have made landfall in modern times. With sustained winds of over 200 kph (peaking at 315 kph), typhoon Haiyan, locally called Yolanda, killed over 6,000 people, injuring more than 27,000 others, displacing approximately 4 million people, and affecting a grand total of 16 million people. 48 hours later, IsraAID's first emergency team left Israel. 


Medical Mission
After less than 24 hours spent on preparations and logistics in Cebu (neighboring island), the team travelled to Tacloban city via military plane (C-130) to begin its humanitarian mission.  Upon consultation and coordination with municipal and national authorities, as well as OCHA (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs), the team joined St. Paul's hospital and immediately began treating patients. 3 days later, after seeing hundreds of patients, the team was relieved by a semi-permanent international body, donated their stock of medicine and food/water, and travelled to Ormoc City to consolidate with the arriving second task force, and restock. 

Once in Ormoc, at the request of the City Department of Health (CDH), and in coordination with the World Health Organization (WHO), IsraAID adopted the district of Ipil (population 29,571). There, together with the local health personnel (approximately 100), the organization developed a new model for the symbiotic and synergetic combination of international medical teams into the local health infrastructure. This new system was highly successful, earning the commendation of the US government liaison and the WHO, and the subsequent addition of the city's most populous district - Cogon (population 44,596). Within these two districts, IsraAID is providing daily support to local health centers and running mobile health clinics, together with American, German, and Filipino medical volunteers and partners. In addition, the organization was also donated portable water filters and over 1 ton of medical supplies by supporting international organizations, rebuilt the roof of the Ipil District Health Center (DHC), and is in the process of rebuilding the roof of the San Antonio health station and daycare center. 

Finally, to help meet the urgent medical needs of some of Ormoc's neighboring municipalities, IsraAID is also organizing 1-2 day weekly mobile clinics in villages from Kananga and Albuera municipalities. 

Altogether, since arriving in Ormoc on November 16th, IsraAID treated over 5,000 patients, and provided Tacloban, Ormoc, Kananga, and Albuera municipalities with over 2 tons of medical supplies. In line with the request of the Ormoc CDH, IsraAID provided medical support (both supplies and human resources) until December 31st 2013 and then donated all the remaining supplies to 3 local hospitals and 2 clinics.

Total direct beneficiaries: approx. 5,000

Total indirect beneficiaries: over 30,000 through treatment and the provision of medical supplies

Food and Emergency Relief Distribution

During the beginning of operations in Ipil, it was brought to our attention that in 8 days since the disaster, the local impoverished population had only received 1.5kg of rice per family, creating an urgent and desperate humanitarian crisis. As a result, in partnership with the Shai Fund, IsraAID provided nearly 2,000 families with food packages and emergency supplies. These were coordinated with the local City Social Welfare Department (CWSD) who advised focusing on vulnerable families - those with senior citizens and children under five.

Total beneficiaries: approx. 9,000

Mental Health and Psycho-Social Services 
At the same time, and at the request of the Ormoc CDH, IsraAID has taken the lead on Mental Health and Psycho-Social Services (MHPSS), conducting stress-debriefing sessions for 821 teachers, Philippines National Police (PNP) members, the local rescue team, and health workers. In addition, in close cooperation with the municipal coordinator on MHPSS issues, IsraAID began building a 1-year post-trauma training course for local professionals.



Mental Health and Psycho-Social Services 
In partnership with Omroc City health department, IsraAID is leading a MHPSS program which provides support and capacity building for targeted groups that are either first responders or that service large pockets of population (namely teachers, health workers, community volunteers and social welfare staff). The program aims to promote the resilience and wellbeing of families through the provision of post and preventive emergency psycho- social services in Ormoc. The program will achieve this goal through the following main objectives:

  • Increase the capacity of selected education, health and social welfare workers to understand the impact of trauma and offer expressive arts based tools for basic psycho-social intervention
  • Improve the standard of the clinical counselling component provided by MHPSS professionals for trauma related family issues using expressive arts as a tool for intervention.
  • Strengthen the MHPSS referral and support systems among service providers (social welfare, school and mental health workers).



This 12-month program is being implemented in two phases:

Phase I (January- June) - As a first stage a core team consisting of 20 professional from various departments was established (education, health and social welfare workers). IsraAID senior expressive art therapists provided Training-Of-Trainers (TOT) for this team covering theoretical and practical tools that will enable them to provide basic psycho-social support.

This core team will then become the city’s main trainers of MHPSS and organize 10 additional 2-week long training seminars for 300 teachers, pedagogues, community volunteers, and health/social welfare workers from their respective locations throughout all 6 of Ormoc’s health districts. Furthermore, they are expected to supervise, coordinate and support their trainees.

This phase is intended to equip a large segment of the community with the basic knowledge and skills to understand trauma and respond more effectively to people’s reactions to crisis and disasters.

Phase II (Months June-December) – This segment will provide selected professionals with advanced in-depth expressive arts-based interventions to respond to family needs in their recovery processes. Providing clinical counselling to families - not only individuals, will increase stability and improve care for all members. It helps parents feel confident and secure in their caregiving, which in turn improves children’s psycho-social well-being.  This phase includes practicum on the job training and on-going supervision from IsraAID’s highly experienced therapists, designed to provide extensive family counselling skills.

This model is an essential tool for building sustainable local capacity that will not only help families in their on-going recovery from the Typhoon, but also develop skills that will serve communities in future disasters.

Based on IsraAID’s experience from previous projects, this program will have a strong focus on expressive arts therapy techniques. Using the arts as educational and therapeutic tools is based on the understanding that creativity allows the individual to create a unique dialogue between his inner world and the reality around him. Utilizing the arts helps individuals deal with difficulties and social, developmental, emotional, and cognitive developments by combining verbal expression with non-verbal techniques.

Total direct beneficiaries: 315

Total indirect beneficiaries: Over 25,000 through trainings and direct support

From January to date the following milestones were achieved:

  • Design and Development of one year long mental health and psycho-social program: in collaboration with Ormoc Health Department, IsraAID team developed and compiled program strategy, work plan, key outputs, and corresponding milestones.  Indicators were set for the life of the program.
  • Delivery of the program’s core team TOT (Training of Trainers)

The training of trainer’s workshop took place from 7th -24th January 2014 in Ormoc. The TOT was the first stage of several activities streamlined as part of the implementation of MHPSS project. TOT participants, namely the “core team” consisted of 17 professionals from various departments (education, health and social welfare workers).

The main objectives of the 12 day process were to increase participants’ understanding of basic disaster and trauma related psycho-social concepts and strengthen their facilitation skills as well as capability to apply expressive art based techniques of psycho-social care. The overall approach was “learning through experience” and therefore an additional cross cutting objective was to provide participants themselves with a safe space to process their own disaster/ crisis related experiences

Both verbal and written evaluations undertaken at the end of the workshop pointed to the achievement of the objectives of the workshop. The findings and feedback from this training will be incorporated into the overall training package to improve the training delivery in future trainings. The following chart provides the results of that evaluation

Participants were asked to rank each questions from 1 to 5 (1 = objective not met and 5 = Objective met). The above chart shows the average rankings of 4 questions.

The next round of training, facilitated by core team members which will be supported and supervised by IsraAID therapists will start on February 11th and will include 30 participants.

Debriefing 2
Debriefing 2
Workshop 3
Workshop 3
An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?