The March 2011 nuclear accident in Fukushima, Japan, has exposed various issues in the society, including disparities. In particular, children's learning, who bear the future, is facing problems. We conduct a series of workshop camps to give the children what they miss and more: playing and learning opportunities in an extreme fashion, with university professors, corporate researchers, artists, athletes and other professionals, assisted by university students as elder friends of the children.
In Fukushima, studies have shown a significant increase in child abuse (75.8% increase in 2012) in the past, probably due to the nuclear accident. The accident has exposed discord within the community through disputes over compensation and health hazards. Children, who are the most vulnerable, are always the most affected. We feel that children and their future, which should be considered first and foremost, are being suppressed by adults for their own reasons - maybe trend in Japan as a whole.
We provide what those children and their families need: diversity of experiences and lots of fun. We bring about 20-30 elementary, junior high or high school students at a time to various outdoor/indoor sites, to conduct a series of workshop camps during holidays (5-day camps in summer and 3-day camps in winter, for example), packed with playing, learning and team-building facilitated by professionals in a variety of fields. We also promote communication among parents of participating children.
Fundamentally, problems lie in the political and economic gap between Tohoku region including Fukushima and Tokyo metropolitan area, which brought nuclear power plants to the region to begin with. Our camps are intended to bring up young leaders in Tohoku, and at the same time to increase the number of concerned people in the metropolitan area by recruiting our volunteers there. We expect to continue our camps for many years, estimating that a total of over 20,000 children will be benefited.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).