Japan Emergency NGO (JEN)

We put our utmost efforts into restoring a self-supporting livelihood both economically and mentally to those people who have been stricken with hardship due to conflicts and disasters. We do so promptly, precisely, and flexibly by fully utilizing local human and material resources, considering this the most promising way to revitalize the society.
Dec 26, 2013

Tsunami Relief for Ishinomaki Locality

Learn, how to make mother shells to raise oysters.
Learn, how to make mother shells to raise oysters.

Target Area

Miyagi Prefecture, Ishinomaki City and nearby villages.

Activities during October, November & December, 2013.

 

Community Building in Ishinomaki

 

[Children Learn Fishing]

 

JEN has been assisting efforts to care for emotional and spiritual needs of children. On October 20, JEN hosted "Furusato Kodomo College in Tanigawahama", an event to offer children in Ishinomaki an opportunity of experiencing fishery. Corporate volunteers and the fishermen from Tanigawahama Fisheries Cooperatives volunteered to help JEN.

Since the disaster, children have had fewer chances to go to the sea due to the traumatic experience of the disaster and evacuation life that forces them to live away from the sea. This event therefore is about getting the bearers of Ishinomaki's future to know Ishinomaki's good things and love Ishinomaki much more through hands-on experience.

On that day children experienced fishing, making mother shells to raise oysters and clearing scallop shells of substances sticking to the front of the shells along with the fishermen.

 

The fishermen who accepted the children looked very happy because the children's cheers filled Tanigawahama where the number of children has decreased.

 

 

[Imoni Party Help Sustain Community]

 

JEN is committed to helping develop mutual supportive relationships and self-sustaining communities by assisting activities that serves that purpose such as traditional customs.

In many parts of the Tohoku region from October to November, there is a custom of enjoying "imoni party" at outdoors such as river banks. Different from area to area as seasonings and gradients are, enjoying over a hot pot featuring taro is called "imoni party". The party usually takes place as an event to socialize with friends or people at work, making Tohoku's people feel that autumn would not be autumn without it as well as hanami party in spring.

On October 27, JEN helped the community association of the evacuees living in Nukaduka temporary housing complex host an imoni party. Not only joined the evacuees but people outside including those living in the neighborhood of the temporary housing and in other temporary housing complex, deepening ties among them.

 

A neighbor brought the evacuees some persimmons from his garden for present using a forklift truck. You can bet that continued efforts to develop people-to-people links such as hosting imoni party could establish mutual supportive relationships.

 

[Lantern Vigil to Commemorate 3,266 Victims]

 With December 5, 2013 at 14:46 marking 1,000 days since the disaster broke out, citizen volunteers hosted "the Great Tohoku Earthquake Lantern Vigil to Commemorate the Anniversary of 1,000 Days." Many people gathered for the prayer vigil from all around the city of Ishinomaki.

This ceremony was run by a planning committee organized by citizens and some 70 volunteers. It's intended to commemorate victims together and determine to move forward together as we were kept alive and allowed to stay live.

First-year art club members at Ishinomaki High School developed the design of lantern layout in the shape of wave rings centering 3/11-shaped lanterns so that the people in Ishinomaki may pay more attention rather than 3/11 to the present and then the future just like wave rings ripple around

 

The chair of the planning committee said "We are going to host the ceremony at each junction to pray for those who were killed and to provide an opportunity of sharing the determination to restore Ishinomaki."

 

 

[The 4th "Come to Join Fishing Event"]

 

JEN continues supporting an event that invites people from across the country to come and enjoy the nature and fresh food of the Oshika peninsula so that disaster areas can boost their self-help efforts toward recovery.

Higashihama planning committee held the fourth "Come to Join Fishery Event" at Sudachihama on the Oshika Peninsula on December 1 with help from JEN.

Now that it was an oyster season, a lot of plans unique to the oyster season were worked out including touring oyster farms; experiencing oyster shelling; exchanging with oyster fishermen in Higashihama; feasting on all-oyster dishes.

Oysters are usually farmed for two years until they are ready to ship; in inshore farms with hardly waves during the first year and for the second year in offshore farms with restless waves. The participants visited both farms and hauled ropes of two-year-old oysters, harvesting large oysters.

After harvesting oysters, the participants experienced shelling oysters with the guidance of the people in Higashihama. We usually eat already-shelled oysters available at stores and so the participants seemed to have difficulties in the first-time experience of their shelling oysters. They were much surprised to hear that fishermen can shell 3-5 oysters per second.

 

By the time they finished shelling oysters, mothers in Higashihama had already prepared lunch, waiting for them to sit at the lunch table. The lunch was abundant in variety such as grilled oysters, rice assorted with blue mussels, miso soup with oysters and laver, fried oysters as well as steamed oysters or an hot pot of oysters using oysters shelled by the participants, proving to be luxurious all-oyster dishes.

 

 

The day went by surprisingly fast; before the participants say good-bye, each participant expressed their thanks or feedbacks to the people in Higashihama.

The Higahsihama planning committee intends to continue with a series of this event. So does JEN.

Children being taught by fishermen.
Children being taught by fishermen.
JEN supported evacuees to hold an imoni party.
JEN supported evacuees to hold an imoni party.
Two-year-old oysters were hauled, finally!!!
Two-year-old oysters were hauled, finally!!!
Wonderful local oyster dishes were served!
Wonderful local oyster dishes were served!
3,266 lanterns, rippling around to the future
3,266 lanterns, rippling around to the future

Links:

Oct 15, 2013

New School Year starts

October 15th, 2013 in Iraq

 

 

The current project is in the final phase. I would like to share with joy that we are working on the last school in the Babil Governorate. Today, I would like to share some comments that we received during our meeting with the Headmaster and some parents. The Headmaster mentioned that he was satisfied with the quality of restoration. Is seems that the cleaning workers are saying that in the past, the latrines were in very poor conditions, but after going through repair, they all look clean and easy to use. They are satisfied that the toilet facilities are more beautiful. Moreover, the Headmaster said, “Educational assistance from JEN allows students to improve their health conditions, and in result, the educational level will improve.”

I fully agree. The health aspect is one of the most important benefits enjoyed by students, and is also the first step towards achieving success. Students are able to concentrate on their studies on the basis of good health.

The parents were also very happy with the improvement in their children’s health and hygiene awareness. One parent said, “The latrines were totally dysfunctional before, and now they are so clean that my child says that she likes the toilet facility at the school better than the one in our home.” Many parents mentioned that they appreciated how JEN provided cleaning materials as well as hygiene kits to the school. It seems that the distributed materials have an important role in raising student’s awareness in cleanness at both the school and home.

I need to say that knowing that the students are practicing hygienic behaviors not only at the school but also in their homes is wonderful.

 

Preparing healthy educational spaces for children who are the ones that can create a society where violence no longer lasts is crucial for Iraq’s future development. That is why JEN’s activities on rehabilitating school facilities and promoting hygiene give hope to Iraqis who seek peace.

  

  

Hygine education at a school.
Hygine education at a school.

Links:

Oct 7, 2013

Preparing for Winter Season, 2013

A Factory to produce drinking water.
A Factory to produce drinking water.

[Socio-economic Disparity in Zaatari Camp]

United under the UN agencies’ umbrella and for the second winter season, organizations working in the Zaatari Camp have started to prepare a contingency plan to accommodate 20,000-30,000 new arrivals to the camp. In addition UNHCR has established a Strategy Advisory Working Group to discuss a long term strategy. JEN was chosen as one of the six major INGOs among over 30 humanitarian organizations working inside the camp.

The camp has been developing at a rapid speed. Now, it has various shops and even a factory with special equipment to produce drinking water. At the same time, economic and social gaps of people inside the camp are growing. Many people are living in pre-fabricated housings with electric equipment, and on the other hand, there are also a huge number of people strongly relying on support from aid agencies. It is important to include those vulnerable people (infants, women household families, elderly and disabled people) in JEN’s activities and make sure each and every person receive support from aid agencies.

 

 

 

 [Rising Cost of Living Accompanied by the Syrian Crisis] 

The price of daily necessities gradually but surely has gone up. Rent fee has also risen nearly 20 percent compared to that of 2 years ago. Some of the refugees from Syria have come to Jordan rent houses by themselves. In addition, the prices of gas and petrol have also slowly gone up since the beginning of this year. As gas stoves and central heating consuming heavy fuel oil are commonly used in Jordan, the increasing fuel cost is expected to make an impact on the livelihoods of Jordanians.

JEN has supported not only Syrian refugees but also public schools in the host communities that have been hosting people evacuating from Syria. We do so through rehabilitating school facilities and promoting hygiene education. JEN has continued to work in order to make changes to the actual situations of both Syrians and Jordanians, and to ensure their safety and comfortable lives in Jordan.

 

 

 

[Colleagues 3,000 Kilometers Away]

JEN activities are supported by various local staffs. Some staffs go to the field every day and communicate with people in needs directly, while some assist such project staffs so that they can carry on activities smoothly. Back-office section doesn’t draw much attention, but it plays a key role of project implementation. Donations are utilized not only for ones directly delivered to people but also for those costs which are required for supporting projects.

Recently, our admin staff had a skype meeting with a local staff in Juba office. Both of them are thoroughly versed in administrative issues, so international staffs didn’t attend the meeting, and it was held in Arabic. It is the first time for her to talk to South Sudanese as well as JEN staffs working in other office so it was motivational for her. It is expected that meetings like this will be continuously held and staffs in different offices being inspired by one another contribute to the further improvement of JEN activities.

 

 

 

[Winter Clothes Distribution to 9,000 Families] 

 Situated in the desert terrain, Zaatari refugee camp should face an extreme seasonal temperature. During the summer, it has faced a fierce heat up to 40 degree Celsius. While during the winter, the refugees will live in severe conditions where the rain is heavy and the temperatures are low.

Last winter of 2012, JEN provided assistance through distributions of winter clothes packages to more than 7,500 families in Zaatari Camp and the border areas. A similar activity will be implemented by JEN for upcoming winter season, 2013. JEN has extended the partnership with UNHCR for distributions of clothes donated by UNIQLO. JEN will start the clothes distribution to 9,000 families in October 2013.

 

 

 

[One Year On…] 

 Only few tents were there last year; however the current population of the camp reaches over hundred thousand people and the Zaatari camp became the fifth largest city in Jordan. JEN’s operation in the camp started from last September, 2012, right after the camp opened. JEN has worked together with UNICEF to establish WASH committee all over the camp to secure people’s presence in the WASH sector and develop their capacity.

Currently around 30 agencies are doing activities inside Zaatari camp. In response to rapid growth of the camp, UNHCR planned to divide the camp into 12 administrative districts and to assign one NGO as a lead agency of each district. JEN was appointed by UNHCR as a lead agency in areas where over 26,000 refugees live. JEN will continue to work in Zaatari camp in close cooperation with the Government of Jordan, UN agencies and other organisations working in the areas in order to ensure peaceful and comfortable living conditions for refugees in the camp.

We see many cars with Syrian number plates.
We see many cars with Syrian number plates.
A staff having a skype meeting with Juba staff.
A staff having a skype meeting with Juba staff.
Unloading winter clothes from the truck.
Unloading winter clothes from the truck.

Links:

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