Japan Storytelling, Mapping Disaster Relief

by IsraAID
Yuka and Marie
Yuka and Marie's Story

Yuka and Marie are volunteers at the social farm in Yamato, Miyagi with Fair Trade Tohoku. This week they helped out JISP  (Japan IsraAid Support Program) with the storytelling project it administers for Global Giving. 

Yuka is from Ishinomaki and Marie is from Sendai. Both cities experienced a great deal of devastation in the tsunami of 3/11. Marie just moved from Sendai to Ishinomaki with her husband, whom she recently married. They now live with his parents there, which is a common custom in Japan for the eldest son. They are both training to work for an elementary school with young kids. However, they also enjoy very much working with the elderly people at the farm.

They did a great job of helping to explain what the elderly participants were saying. The elderly people in Tohoku speak in a very difficult dialect called Zuzuben that many young Japanese have difficulty understanding. Yuka and Marie are now training in the Fair Trade Tohoku office.

The Global Giving storytelling project administered by JISP-IsraAid was very important to allow these local volunteers a chance to share their stories and the stories of the elderly people they assist.

Comment: I am thankful for JISP for coming to the social farm and giving us these cute pens. Kawaii J (Cute in Japanese)

Application Q1
Application Q1

Over the course of about two months in addition to collecting interviews we developed the Global Giving Japan Storytelling Project Phone and Tablet Application.

The survey link copied below is available in Japanese and English. Please take a survey and tell us more about the good work that organizations are doing. It can be completed by computer, but it is best suited for an Iphone or any smart phone.


In addition to the storytelling tool about organizations we also have been working on a storytelling tool about volunteering. Unfortunately, we did not receive any donations for this project, and we are not able to pursue building this survey. We are very hopeful that we will receive funding to pursue the creation of a volunteer database. The goal of this second project will be to collect people's experiences volunteering and to learn about their aspirations to volunteer in the future. By doing so we will be able to assist volunteers and organizations that need volunteers and use them effectively.  

We created this application, because it was difficult for people to complete the storytelling form on their own. The storytelling form works well for interviews, but most Japanese respondents had trouble thinking of a story on their own. If you have a more detailed story about Japanese disaster relief or other non-profit community support activities, please go to the website and share a story. 


We are now developing a DIY interface that will allow us to do 3 things: 1) write surveys ourselves, 2) collect the results automatically from a url, and 3) build automatic reports that can be viewed online. In addition to just allowing us to build and develop the surveys, we are also working on automated analysis tools. This would allow donors to receive up to the minute results in real time. This tool could be a great resource for projects around the world.  

We would like to thank our volunteer Brian Sherman, who very graciously agreed to help in creating this application. Brian came all the way to Japan in order to finish the application. We would also like to thank the numerous locals from Ofunato, Iwate to Joetsu, Niigata who took pilots of the survey and helped me with the revisions. We already purchased a tablet in order to start distributing the survey. This week we are going to start going around to events with the tablet to approach people to take the survey. We will also be distributing it to every NPO by mail.

We appreciate your participation and support. We are very open to hearing more about funding opportunities to make our volunteer survey become a reality and to further collect funding for this project. 

Application Q3
Application Q3
Application Question 2
Application Question 2
Collecting a story with Support the Underground
Collecting a story with Support the Underground
Storytelling with High School Students
Storytelling with High School Students



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Organization Information


Location: Tel Aviv, Merkaz - Israel
Website: http:/​/​www.israaid.org
Project Leader:
Keith Goldstein
Be'er Sheva, Israel

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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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