Build Back Better Tohoku

Apr 17, 2014

Tohoku Reconstruction Update: April

Highlight: Mitazono Wakaba Kindergarten Opens Its Doors!

On March 29th, children and parents filled the kindergarten for the pre-opening event where children full of excitement and energy will soon be running around.

A large group effort was made in an effort to complete the building before this event. Architecture for Humanity helped sand off column edges, floors and walls, and built a few shelving units with Professor Ishihara, architect of record, who brought up a group of students from Chiba (about an 8-hour drive away). Meanwhile the contractor worked full speed to build the pavement and complete the final touches, completing the building just in time for the event.

On event day, the building quickly filled with excited children and parents as they arrived to get a first taste of their school. The teachers introduced themselves, explained the overall schedule and curriculum, and called the children one by one to receive their new school uniforms. Following the event, the children ran around the building, chasing each other and the balloons, and running around the outdoor corridor in circles - the children's favorite part of the building for sure.

We look forward to seeing the children use the space with their excitement and energy!



MakiBiz RFP Program Overview

Our Wakaba Kindergarten project was recently completed, adding to our list of finished projects within this program, and at our completed Ushiogami Project, paper craftsman, Master Tsukahara lead a workshop on April 12.

Five projects have now been completed, and the remaining four projects are currently in construction, permitting and design phases! A more detailed report on current RFP projects to be posted on our website's update section soon!


MakiBiz Business Seminar

The launch event for our current MakiBiz Business Seminar Series: Using Design to Expand Your Market, was held in February and has been a great hit. Lead by Mr. Kasama from Communa Translation Design, this seminar series is being held over a period of four days. Learn more here.

MakiBiz Client Intake

MakiBiz has supported 167 business owners since its office opened in November 2012. Information about our clients along with other MakiBiz updates can be found here.


We greatly thank those who participated in GlobalGiving's Japan Matching Campaign that ran from March 11. Your continued support enables us to continue supporting communities in need. Thank you!




  • MakiBiz Business Seminar: Using Design to Expand Market - April 30, May 30 MakiBiz continues to host free business seminars through our partner, Mr. Kasama (Japanese only). Seminar recap to come!




Say Hello!

This month we had a new addition to our team! Kayoko Sakamoto will be working as a Communications Associate at MakiBiz. Having just completed her HQ training, she's ready to roll!

Kayoko comes from a professional background in event coordination and promotion, and has managed several community-based events in Japan. She is another believer of the power of social design, and loves to travel and take photos.

Welcome, Kayoko! We're happy to have you on our team!





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Project Leader

Hiromi Tabei

San Francisco, CA United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Build Back Better Tohoku