Ishinomaki 3000th Day Remembrance Ceremony
As the 3000 day anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake passes and Ishinomaki holds their memorial ceremonies we remember all the loved ones lost and resolve to continue to help in the recovery of the area.
Taylor Bunko Dedication at Minato Elementary School March 15, 2019 -
We dedicated the 14th Taylor Bunko to Minato Elementary School in Ishinomaki and were treated to a beautiful ceremony and song from the children. We presented book coupons to the students so their school can fill the shelves with books of their choice. Endo-san made six different rolling bookshelves so each grade has their own. He bore a hole per grade in the American pine so each class knows their bookshelf. He said he used sequoia, the tallest tree, that reaches to Taylor in the sky for a horizontal piece that connects each grade and a hard wood, Indonesian Ulin for the bottom book retaining strip so it would withstand the wear of student use. We told the children we hope the books will help them to find their dreams as Taylor did.
The students at Minato Elementary School in Ishinomaki sang a beautiful song at the Taylor Bunko dedication called "Important Things".
The night spent counting shooting stars with you
Today I feel the same winds we felt that day
No matter how much time passes by and how many seasons go by
I never forget my feelings
I was once unaware of important things
Now these warm feelings in my heart
Hold back my tears when I feel like I’m falling apart
And remember the day I was singing that song
I hear the voice, Take heart. Never feel discouraged.
You taught me the resilience and warmness
If I can see you again, I want to say Thank You
You are far away but I’m here taking heart
I was once unaware of important things
You taught me I am not alone
Taylor Bunko Dedication at Minato Junior High School March 15, 2019 –
We dedicated the 15th Taylor Bunko to Minato JH in Ishinomaki and enjoyed the speech and discussions with the library club VP and student council leaders. They asked for the list of Taylor's favorite childhood books so they could purchase some of them with their book coupons. They were happy that “Narnia” and “Harry Potter” are on the list! Endo-san told them how he designed their Taylor Bunko with rolling benches where books can be stored on either side of the rolling book case. They will be put outside of the library in the hall so students can stop and sit and read even when the library is closed. We hope these books help to open the world to them as they did for Taylor.
Ishinomakimono Card Project Donation to TAMF
Ryoko presents Jean with a donation to TAMF from the profits of Ishinomakimono card sales. The kimono in the background was just donated. It is a 120 year old wedding kimono and will make for beautiful cards. You can contact Ryoko about the cards at Ishinomakimono@gmail.com!
Project Nozomi Crafts Taylor Necklaces
We are honored to have Project Nozomi craft a line of necklaces in Taylor's memory. We met them Ishinomaki and they presented Jean with a Taylor necklace. They also donated book coupons for Taylor Anderson Reading Corners (Bunko)! Some of the women told us stories about Taylor. They are located in the Watanoha neighborhood very close to the Taylor Bunko at Watanoha ES and the Endo's at Team Watahoi!
Nozomi, which means 'hope' in Japanese, is a faith-based social enterprise bringing sustainable income, community, dignity and hope to the women in Ishinomaki, Japan by training them to craft high-quality jewelry products. Nozomi women are creating one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry featuring broken pieces of pottery left in the wake of the tsunami and other up-cycled pottery. Each of our product lines has been named by a Nozomi woman in honor of a loved one in her life. #bebrokenwithus
TAMF Kodomo Mirai Kikin Symposium on State Of Children in the Disaster Area -
We heard from a panel of experts on the situation of children in the disaster area at the Japan National Press Club in Tokyo on March 16, 2019. Many students and families still show the effects of what happened to their families and homes. A big problem is students dropping out of school. Many of the participants have programs to help the students recover and return to school.
We were so happy to see Ren from our TAMF 2017 Summer Exchange of Ishinomaki High School students to Richmond and Washington, DC! He spoke at the Japan National Press Club in Tokyo at our TAMF and Kodomo Mirai Kikin symposium about the situation of children in the disaster area. Ren just graduated high school and will be going to college to pursue a career in robotics. He said the exchange changed his life and he would like to pursue a global career in automobile robotics. We look forward to hearing from him again as he crafts his future!
Tokyo TAMF Charity Seminar Held in May
A Charity seminar was held on Sunday 12 at Nikkei Hall in Tokyo. All the charity money over 3 million yen will be gifted to TAMF. Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki of the president of TAMF spoke appreciation at the beginning of the event.
Taylor Bunko Outreach – Visit to Ishinomaki ES
We visited Ishinomaki Elementary school which is one of the 13 Ishinomaki Elementary Schools that received books through the Taylor Bunko Outreach Program. We talked with the librarian club students including Haru, who welcomed Gracie for homestay last summer and a student journalist from the Ishinomaki Hibi kids newspaper (www.facebook.com/kodomomiraikenkyusho/ who was invited to Manchester, the U.K. The butterflies on the bulletin board are inspired by the book "A Gift from Taylor" by Naomi Chiba who wrote the book so students though time would understand the story of why there are Taylor Bunkos in their schools. She writes that Endo-san's two children who had Taylor as a teacher said that "she flew from school to school like a butterfly" on her bike and he added "spreading hopes and dreams". Books will be donated to the remaining 20 Ishinomaki E.S the next two years.
We also had lunch with the 6th graders who would graduate in two days. The students asked us questions. The article mentions that among the questions they asked are where are you from and do you like Japanese foods. We answered Virginia, USA and the school lunch is very healthy and tastes good!! This was the students second to the last lunch together before they graduated so it was an honor to be with them. They also got to choose the menu, and of course, prepare and clean up!
TAMF, in conjunction with the Ishinomaki Board of Education (BOE), started a three year Taylor Bunko Outreach program of donating English books to 33 Ishinomaki elementary schools as " a gift from Taylor". This benefits 6,518 students. This year we donated to 13 schools and a ceremony was held at Ishinomaki elementary school on October 18 where TAMF managing director Mr. Takanarita, donated the book package to Mr. Kamei, the school principal and to students. Each school receives 40 Japanese-English picture books chosen by the BOE and a 30,000 yen book card for the school to choose their own books. The donation includes the book “A Gift From Taylor” written by Naomi Chiba, which is a Japanese-English book explaining the story of Taylor Bunko’s to students.. Maruzen book importer provided bulk pricing. We will donate to 13 schools in next year and 7 in 2020.
Ishinomaki Hibi Kodomo Kid Journalists have Workshop with Mr. Shinichi Endo
We reported last time about this workshop and since then an English article in Kyoko News has been published. Please enjoy at https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2019/03/91a7935995c7-feature-survivors-craft-helps-rebuild-a-life-shattered-by-2011-tsunami.html.
Thank you for your support which helps us continue programs like these to help Ishinomaki families, schools and students affected by the disaster to continue to recover, learn and expand their horizons! Please follow us on Facebook/Tamfjp
Minato ES Taylor Bunko Bookshelves
Minato JH Taylor Bunko Dedication
Minato JH Taylor Bunko Article
Ishinomakimono Card Profit Donation to TAMF
Project Nozomi Group Picture
Project Nozomi Taylor Necklaces
TAMF Mirai Kikin Symposium Panel
Ren Speaks at TAMF Mirai Kikin Symposium
Ambassador Fujisaki Charity Seminar Presentation
Ishinomaki ES Taylor Bunko Outreach Visit
Ishinomaki ES Taylor Bunko Outreach Lunch