On behalf of the local residents of Nishihara Village who have been benefiting from the support of Global Giving donors, I wish to extend my gratitude. With your support, from April to June, we have mobilized a total of 226 volunteers and assisted 94 local farmers and their families in their agricultural farms and in maintenance of their public lands.
Mrs. Fujimoto, an earthquake survivor and one of the local farmers who has been receiving help from the volunteers, said that other than eating her favorite Haagen-Dazs ice cream, meeting and working with the volunteers is one of the things that she is looking forward to. After the earthquake, she has to work 7 days a week to cope with the loads of work both in her farm and in taking care of her family, including her 100- year-old mother and 2 grandchildren.
Mrs. Fujimoto mentioned that the presence of the volunteers is not only helping her in producing and packaging her sweet potatoes, but also a big help in her emotional recovery as they are willing listen when she is voicing her problems. Before we parted, she asked for my address and two days after, I received a box full of sweet potatoes. The warmth and the gesture are quite overwhelming.
Meanwhile, together with Ms. Nambiar, Global Giving field-staff, we have met with the village leaders of Nishihara Village. They showed us the map showing the areas damaged by the earthquake and mentioned that until now, 80% of the total 34-hectare village`s paddy field is still left untilled, because of the damaged dam that used to supply the water needed for the rice production. The village leaders extended their gratitude to OISCA for mobilizing volunteers who are helping in the maintenance of their paddy fields. Without doing any grass cutting activities in the paddy fields, shrubs and trees will grow naturally and would further delay the tilling of lands.
The number of requests from the villagers may have decrease as the phase of the recovery support is about to complete, but we still feel the need to support because of the problem of aging local farmers and the shortage of human resources. Moreover, two-years since the earthquake and the immense destruction among the villagers is gradually forgotten. Our activities are somewhat important in informing the general-public of the need to reach out and help the victims.
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