We wanted to update what we have been able to develop despite the constraints of COVID. Aside from placing new iMacs in homes in Yokohama, we have also created more content to be shared online with our Ambassadors who have aged out of the homes.
One program is teaching online using NightZooKeeper and Digital Citizenship content from CommonSense.org. We have received and rolled out Cubettos tools to teach the very youngest of our children the concept of coding by using tiles that the robot follows on a map.
When we could not find suitable typing software, we started developing our own which is being worked on weekly in our Computer Dojo.
Some students who have aged out and found that their universities required them to connect online, we supplied them with laptops so they could keep up with the other students. In other cases when their laptops blew up, we happily replaced them as they did not have the budget or support system to do so.
Volunteer teachers are not only working with us to do software development but also teaching IchigoJam coding to the children remotely.
COVID posed many challenges for us but we had to pivot and find different ways to connect thanks to your generous support, we continue to be able to do so.
We are pleased with how things have gone since last year and starting this collaboration.
Since our last report, despite COVID restrictions, we were able to deliver iMacs to a new home in Yokohama,Aasana Sojiji which is an orphanage and also a refuge for abused women/single mothers. Once the restrictions are lifted, we have plans to go in and start our program with them.
Meanwhile we have made headway in offering online courses. We have US teenagers teaching online with children in Japan. We have our Ambassadors (children who have aged out of the home) teaching coding online to the children the homes they came from as well as new homes which have joined us in Funabashi, Nagoya and soon Nagasaki. They are teaching coding, HTML, Microsoft software certification and IchigoJam.
We continue to be in touch with all 600 homes in Japan, especially during out Staff Seminars hosted with TELL from January to March. While we receive donated hardware, our Ambassadors and preparing and shipping out as we have a goal to have one computer in every home in Japan.
Weekly we are able to attend Digital Citizenship courses at St.Francis as long as the number of volunteers is capped and we wear masks. We alternate between English, Digital Citizenship lessons, coding and IchigoJam lessons.
More and more mentors are being paired with children and we are happy to see that we are increasing our reach despite the challenges that COVID has brought.
Thank you very much for your generous donations and continued support of YouMeWe.
This project originally was seeking funding to support the staff in the homes which we consider "Essential Workers" as they had to report to work even during the lockdown and the pandemic as they needed to care for the kids in the homes.
While this project is still in progress, from the funds raised, we have been able to supply homes with more equipment sending out IOT devices to all of the offices of the homes and the Ambassadors who have graduated from the homes are working with the staff on how to make the devices, coupled with IOT plugs, enhance their everyday lives.
We have also collaborated with TELL, the NPO Helpline for people in Japan as well as Sonoda-sensei to devise Staff Workshops which will be conducted over the quarter and throughout the year to help the staff with stress, mental health challenges, work/life balance between home and the office and lastly how to care for children who have experienced trauma which lead to them living in the homes. How their jobs with this knowledge is crucial for the child's development as a future member of society.
Aside from Christmas parties which were held, outings to the Imperial Palace where some of the kids saw swans for the first time, we also continued to hold our Financial Literacy testing, Career testing and help the kids set SMART Goals. While they may not have had a say in how their lives started, we want to empower them along with the staff on making sure their lives end up the way they want.
We have even hired a few of the Ambassadors (children who have aged out of the home) some of who are in further education and work with us to teach coding to the young generation. We were also able to help a young lady get a job with one of the prominent car companies in Japan as further evidence that we are making a small difference thanks to your contributions.
We look forward to updating you in the near future about our further progress.
Cityzens Giving for Recovery, City Football Group’s ground-breaking 12-month recovery drive, is bringing together its nine clubs, thousands of staff, and millions of fans, to help communities get back on their feet in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of Cityzens Giving for Recovery, they are matching donations for the funding of nine recovery-linked projects near each of their clubs including Yokohama Marinos with YouMeWe NPO until September 30th.
In Yokohama and Tokyo, many children living in care homes have been left isolated as a result of the Coronavirus crisis.
Whilst the needs of children always come first, the essential workers who look after them have continued to put their lives at risk and the lives of their families coming to work every day during a time of global uncertainty.
This project will provide support to both the children and the staff in care homes in Yokohama, Tohoku, Tokyo and Nagoya.
Essential goods will be provided to equip homes with the tools they need to run efficiently and provide a safe environment for children to live and learn.
Staff will also be provided with psycho-social support to ensure their own health and well-being.
Shinji Suzuki, board member at YouMeWe said :”This project will help provide essential goods and tools to create a safe environment for children to live and learn.
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