Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project

by Hands On Tokyo
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Disaster Recovery Volunteer Project
Helping out at the New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho
Helping out at the New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho

Thank you very much for your continued generous support.

 

In October HOT volunteers participated in a Day of Service in Tokyo by exhibiting photographs of HOT volunteer projects in Tohoku and the many wonderful people in Tohoku HOT volunteers have been able to support with your generous donations.  Through this exhibition, we were able to share the stories of the people of Tohoku and the positive impact volunteers can have on those still trying to rebuild their lives after the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami.  It also encouraged new volunteers to join our Tohoku projects.

 

There continue to be labor shortages in certain parts of Tohoku that are making it very hard for local farmers to rebuild their lives, run their farms and grow their businesses as the limited number of available workers are deployed on large scale infrastructure and other construction projects. They and their families simply cannot do all the hard labor-intensive work themselves.  They need the continued support of volunteers. With your generous contributions, HOT volunteers have been able to continue to support a local farmer, Saito-san, and the New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho.  The New Rice Center gives rice farmers in the Yamamoto-cho area a place to store equipment and supplies and to work, get together and share information. It also contains new rice thrashing equipment that local farmers can use when harvesting rice and packaging the harvested rice for the market.

 

In October, 15 HOT volunteers, including teenagers who live in a children’s home in the Tokyo area, helped Saito-san clear fields after harvesting vegetables.  They also enjoyed providing Saito-san and his wife with a chance to relax for a little bit by preparing a BBQ using his locally-grown vegetables. In November, 15 HOT volunteers, including teenagers from the children’s home, helped the New Rice Center by attacking a mountain of rice chaff, the protective casings separated from rice grains during the thrashing process.  The rice chaff has to be manually bagged so that it can be taken away and used as fertilizer.  It is hard to imagine how long it would take local farmers to bag and remove all of the rice chaff without the support of volunteers.   

 

Going forward, we will continue to organize more volunteer trips to further support the New Rice Center and Saito-san, his wife and others in Tohoku as they work hard to further rebuild their lives.  We also are coordinating a job shadowing program with Saito-san and other local Tohoku farmers for youths who must leave the children’s home when they turn 18.  This will connect local Tohoku farmers who are looking for young people to work with in rebuilding the local agricultural economy and youths who lack family and other support and who are looking for jobs.

 

In November, 15 HOT volunteers helped with the hotate matsuri (scallop festival) in Ogatsu by running the scallop booth which gave festival attendees the chance to enjoy grilled fresh oysters.  Prior to the earthquake and tsunami, the hotate matsuri was a very popular annual event.  While so much of Ogatsu has yet to be reconstructed and while so many former residents are still waiting to return to their beloved hometown, it was so encouraging to see so many smiling faces in Ogatsu for the day to enjoy local fresh scallops.  Thank you for making this possible.

 

Going forward and so long as people are still living in temporary housing, we also will continue to hold cafes and events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku.  And we will travel to Ogatsu to help maintain the community house (which was built with the help of your generous donations), to clean local beaches so that people from the greater Sendai area will continue to visit the area and thereby support the local economy and to participate in special events like the hotate matsuri to encourage those who are still waiting to resume their lives in Ogatsu and the surrounding communities.

 

None of this would be possible without your generous support. Thank you in advance for your continued support and for touching the hearts and souls of so many people in Tohoku.  

Helping at the Scallop Festival in Ogatsu
Helping at the Scallop Festival in Ogatsu
Helping at the Scallop Festival in Ogatsu
Helping at the Scallop Festival in Ogatsu
With Saito-san at New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho
With Saito-san at New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho
With Saito-san at New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho
With Saito-san at New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho
Bagging rice husk at the New Rice Center
Bagging rice husk at the New Rice Center
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Volunteer helping in the NRC
Volunteer helping in the NRC

With your generous contributions, HOT volunteers have been able to continue to support a local farmer – Saito-san – and the New Rice Center in Yamamoto-cho.  The New Rice Center gives rice farmers in the Yamamoto-cho area a place to store equipment and supplies and to work, gather and share information.  In July, HOT volunteers helped Saito-san secure netting and then attach growing paprika plants to the netting in five greenhouses.  By attaching the growing plants to the netting, the branches will not break and die when the baby paprika begin to grow larger.  At the end of the day, the HOT volunteers remarked how hard it must be for Saito-san, his wife and other local farmers to do all that work by themselves.  It is very hard for Saito-san, his wife and other local farmers to run their farms and grow their businesses without the support of HOT volunteers given the continued labor shortages in certain parts of Tohoku. 

 

Going forward, we will organize more volunteer trips to further support the New Rice, the Ogatsu Island Farm Project (a new business in Ogatsu growing local produce) and Saito-san, his wife and others in Tohoku as they work hard to further rebuild their lives.

 

HOT has also been able to continue organizing cafes and other events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku as a way of supporting the residents who lost their homes in the tsunami while they are waiting to move into new homes. These events encourage people to spend a bit of time outside of their small temporary living quarters and to socialize with others in their temporary community.  These events also play an important role in letting these residents know that, with the passage of time, they have not been forgotten by those living outside of Tohoku.

 

In June, we held a café at which HOT volunteers made and served yakisoba, sausages with tomatoes, Japanese omelets, French toast, hot and cold drinks, fruit pies and other sweets.  After lunch, a HOT volunteer played several beautiful songs on his keyboard.  It was wonderful seeing how the power of music can bring members of the temporary community and HOT volunteers together and to see so many smiling faces.  Thank you for making this possible with your generous donations. 

 

HOT is also finding ways for volunteers in Tokyo to support Tohoku without having to travel to Tohoku.  In June, HOT volunteers held interactive cooking classes with children from two children’s homes who seldom have opportunities to meet with adults other than those working at the children’s homes and their teachers.  Chefs taught the children easy to make recipes with the assistance of HOT volunteers and then everyone enjoyed eating lunch together.  This taught the children important cooking skills that they can use when they leave the children’s home and we sourced the ingredients from Tohoku.  We obtained vegetables from Saito-san’s farm and seafood from Ogatsu, a community that HOT has been supporting for more than three years with your generous donations.  Several teenagers residing at the children’s home who have participated in our volunteer trips to Tohoku also gave a presentation on their experiences volunteering with HOT in Tohoku.

 

In June, two groups of HOT volunteers in Tokyo baked and decorated cookies and then made goody bags with the handmade cookies for temporary housing residents near Yamamoto-cho.  The residents were very happy when they received the goody bags. 

 

Going forward and so long as people are still living in temporary housing, we will hold more cafes and events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku.  We also will travel to Ogatsu to help maintain the community house (which was built with the help of your generous donations), to clean local beaches so that people from the greater Sendai area will continue to visit the area and thereby support the local economy and to hold special events to encourage those who are still waiting to resume their lives in Ogatsu and the surrounding communities.

 

We could not do what we do without your generous support.  Thank you in advance for your continued support and for bringing smiles to the faces of so many people in Tohoku.  

Volunteers helping in the NRC
Volunteers helping in the NRC
HOT Cafe at a temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
HOT Cafe at a temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
HOT Cafe at a temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
HOT Cafe at a temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
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Yamamoto-cho. Helping out building green houses.
Yamamoto-cho. Helping out building green houses.

Hands On Tokyo (HOT) volunteers continue to support a local farmer – Saito-san – in Yamamoto-cho.  In March, 15 HOT volunteers (including two teenagers who live in a children’s home in the Tokyo area) helped Saito-san build two new greenhouses and, in April, 16 HOT volunteers (including one teenager who lives in a children’s home in the Tokyo area) helped Saito-san install plastic siding on several greenhouses. HOT is also supporting Saito-san in the building of the New Rice Center to support rice farmers in the Yamamoto-cho area so they will have a place to store equipment and supplies and to work, gather and share information.  The New Rice Center will also be used to train new farmers. The cost of the materials was funded by Boy Scout Troop #5 at the American School in Japan (ASIJ) and the Tokyo Law Tennis Club.  With your generous donations, 19 HOT volunteers (including high school students from a volunteer club at the American School in Japan) helped build the New Rice Center in May.  The next day, the same 19 HOT volunteers assisted with the Ogatsu Island Farm Project which aims to grow local produce as a new business in Ogatsu.  The volunteers helped launch the Project by helping clear the soil.

 

Saito-san, his wife and other local rice farmers who will use the New Rice Center and those who are launching the Ogatsu Island Farm Project could not have done all this work without the support of HOT volunteers given the nature of the tasks and the continued labor shortage in certain parts of Tohoku.  Going forward, we will organize more volunteer trips to further support the New Rice Center, the Ogatsu Island Farm Project and Saito-san and others in Tohoku as they work hard to further rebuild their lives.

 

Even though it is more than three years since the triple disaster in Tohoku, there are still many people residing in temporary housing. With your generous contributions, HOT has been able to continue organizing cafés and other events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku as a way of supporting the residents who lost their homes in the tsunami while they are waiting to move into new homes. These events encourage people to spend a bit of time outside of their small temporary living quarters and to socialize with others in their temporary community. 

 

In March, we held a spring festival themed café at which a HOT volunteer performed several hula dances and taught the temporary housing residents the meaning of many hula dance moves.  The residents and the HOT volunteers then danced several hula dances together.  HOT volunteers also made and served yakisoba, sausages with tomatoes, soup, French toast, hot drinks, cheesecake and other sweets.  In April, we held another café at which HOT volunteers made lunch for the temporary housing residents and served hot drinks and sweets.  After lunch, one HOT volunteer played several beautiful songs on his keyboard.  At both cafes, it was wonderful seeing the power of music and dance to bring members of the temporary community and HOT volunteers together and to see so many smiling faces.  Thank you for making this possible with your generous donations. 

 

Going forward and so long as people are still living in temporary housing, we will hold more cafés and events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku.  We also will travel to Ogatsu to help maintain the O-Link community house (which was built with the help of your generous donations), to clean local beaches so that people from the greater Sendai area will continue to visit the area and thereby support the local economy and to hold special events to encourage those who are still waiting to resume their lives in Ogatsu and the surrounding communities.

 

Thank you in advance for your continued support which brings smiles to the faces of so many people in Tohoku.    

Yamamoto-cho. HOT cafe at temporary housing site
Yamamoto-cho. HOT cafe at temporary housing site
With ASIJ club. Making sand bags
With ASIJ club. Making sand bags
With ASIJ club. Building NRC's new pipe house.
With ASIJ club. Building NRC's new pipe house.
Ogatsu. Removing rocks from soil for the new field
Ogatsu. Removing rocks from soil for the new field
Ogatsu. With ASIJ club and Ogatsu Island project
Ogatsu. With ASIJ club and Ogatsu Island project
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Exciting news! Once again, GlobalGiving, the US-based charity fundraising website, has announced a donation matching campaign for Tohoku projects. As in the previous year, GlobalGiving will match all donations by 100% (maximum $1,000 per donation) until their funds of US$100,000 run out.  In the last two campaigns, we received donations from hundreds of donors throughout the world. We would like to express our most heartfelt thanks to all those who donated so generously during this campaign.

In commemoration of the tragic events that occurred in northeast Japan, this year's matching campaign will begin on March 11, 2014. At Hands On Tokyo, our goal is to raise US$15,000 in this campaign.  With 100% matching from GlobalGiving, it is an extraordinary opportunity to make your donations go twice as far. We hope you will help us again in support of our Tohoku Projects.

This campaign is a reminder of just how much there is still left to do after three years from the Great East Japan earthquake. To this end, Hands On Tokyo is dedicated to continuing its programs in Tohoku to support the rebuilding and recovery of the region. O-Link House, our community center in Ogatsu, Miyagi-ken, was completed last spring and has since been hosting numerous activities. Please help us provide ongoing and sustainable community development in Ogatsu and other areas affected by the tragedy.

Please help spread the word about this important opportunity to support our Tohoku Projects. Below is the link to our project on the GlobalGiving site:

  **Please wait until March 11 (when the matching campaign starts) to make your donation** http://goto.gg/8934

We will be sending you a reminder email before the launch of the campaign, and again shortly before March 11.

Thank you for your generosity and continued support.

The Hands On Tokyo Team

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Volunteers handing out Christmas pillows
Volunteers handing out Christmas pillows

HOT volunteers continue to support a local farmer – Saito-san -- in Yamamoto-cho. In December, 20 HOT volunteers (including two teenagers who live in a children’s home in the Tokyo area) cleared Saito-san’s asparagus field and winterized three of his greenhouses. In February, 16 HOT volunteers (including one teenager from the children’s home) helped clear paprika plants from two of his greenhouses.  Saito-san and his wife could not have done this without the support of HOT volunteers given the nature of the tasks and the continued labor shortage in certain parts of Tohoku. Going forward, we will organize more volunteer trips to further support Saito-san and others in Tohoku as they work hard to further rebuild their lives.

There are still many people residing in temporary housing in Tohoku. With your generous contributions, HOT has been able to continue organizing cafes and other events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku as a way of supporting the residents who lost their homes in the tsunami while they are waiting to move into new homes. These events encourage people to spend a bit of time outside of their small temporary living quarters and to socialize with others in their temporary community. In December, we held a Christmas themed cafe at which a HOT volunteer played Christmas and other nostalgic songs on the flute and HOT volunteers made and served yakisoba, sausages with tomatoes from Saito-san’s farm, corn soup, French toast, hot drinks and Christmas sweets. After lunch, HOT volunteers folded paper cranes with some of the residents. We delivered 1,000 folded cranes (senbazuru) made by temporary housing residents in Tohoku together with HOT volunteers to the Philippines Embassy in Tokyo to wish the survivors of last year’s devastating typhoon a quick recovery.

The December HOT volunteers also distributed a holiday pillow to each temporary housing unit as part of a collaborative project with some of our partners. One partner donated about 100 pillows which were decorated with Santa appliques by volunteers in Tokyo. Children residing in a children’s home in the Tokyo area wrapped the pillows, made Christmas ornaments and wrote message cards.  From start to finish, this holiday project involved over 100 volunteers.

In February, HOT volunteers helped shovel snow and held a Valentine’s themed cafe. We distributed 100 Valentine’s candy bags made by seven HOT volunteers in Tokyo and made and served yakisoba, sausages, corn soup, French toast and Valentine’s sweets.  A HOT volunteer played nostalgic songs on the keyboard. It was wonderful seeing smiles on the faces of the temporary housing residents and the volunteers on a cold winter Sunday afternoon in Tohoku. Thank you for making this possible with your generous donations. 

Going forward, we will hold more cafes and events at temporary housing sites in Tohoku.  We also will travel to Ogatsu to help maintain the community house (which was built with the help of your generous donations), to clean local beaches so that people from the greater Sendai area will continue to visit the area and thereby support the local economy and to hold special events to encourage those who are still waiting to resume their lives in Ogatsu.

Thank you in advance for your continued support which touches the hearts of so many people in Tohoku.   

Helping winterize Saito-san's green house
Helping winterize Saito-san's green house
Group shot from Christmas HOT Cafe
Group shot from Christmas HOT Cafe
Residents at temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
Residents at temporary housing in Yamamoto-cho
Valenetine's goodie bags & 1000 folded cranes
Valenetine's goodie bags & 1000 folded cranes
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Organization Information

Hands On Tokyo

Location: Tokyo - Japan
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @Hands_On_Tokyo
Project Leader:
Naho Hozumi
Tokyo, Japan
$89,572 raised of $99,000 goal
 
479 donations
$9,428 to go
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