We are happy to say that the needs of the community have shifted to the types of projects we described in our February project report. The "Big Up ishinomaki", "Taylor Book Club", "Yui no ie Nursery" and "Librarian Project" actitivies described in our February Project Report will now be included in our "Helping Students, Familes and Schools Recover" Project. We appreciate your support for "Smile Together Ishinomaki" and invite you to continue to support the Taylor Anderson Memorial Fund through our Help Students, Families and Schools Recover Project and/or our "Scholarships to Live Dreams and Move Forward" project.
Please donate to one of these project on March 10th at 11 am EDT. Donations will be matched 100% by Global Giving while funds last.
GlobalGiving will be hosting a matching campaign to support our rebuilding and recovery work. There will be $30,000 USD in matching funds, and donations will be matched up to $1,000 USD per project per donor and up to $15,000 USD per project.
Big Up Ishinonmaki is a volunteer group based in Okaido, Ishinomaki since soon after the disaster. They plan to build a playground for kids. A new kid’s house called “Angel House” is to open on March 14, 2015 with the help of TAMF. This group organized a picnic of 100 children to a national park in Sendai. A lot of volunteers come in and out to join this group and find things to do. They coordinate and send those volunteers to the Ishinomaki communities. Some of the volunteer activities were a cosmetic company visited the Cosmos House to give free make-up lessons for the affected old ladies and a music therapy team worked with Down's syndrome children. Big Up Ishinomaki held a Summer festival for Okaido community in Ishinomaki. The festival used to be held every summer by the community itself before the disaster, but the community disappeared.
Taylor Book Club
TAMF worked with Project Yui to hold an Ishinomaki teacher’s workshop on book clubs. This program offers opportunities for teachers to discuss how to teach reading for students. They exchange what they found by reading the same book at the same time with the help of instructors. Teachers have limited opportunities to prepare classes after the disaster. Sincere teachers are enthusiastically learning for their students.
Yui no ie Nursery
Daycare facilities are very limited in Ishinomaki. Yui No Ie Nursery helps many mothers so that they can raise their children and work or take care of other necessary tasks. TAMF assisted the Yui no Ie Nursery to purchase a nursery cart. This transportation device is used to carry 5-6 small children to take them to the park. In the case of emergency, its nurses can easily help those children evacuated by using this cart.
Ishinomaki schools do not have full-time librarians, which limits the opportunities for children to find books at libraries. Taylor loved reading which helped her find her dreams. TAMF helps Ishinomaki school libraries to have librarians and become places for children to enjoy books and explore their dreams. This also helps to create job opportunities for local people.
Nine more Voices of Tohoku DVD's were delivered to Takeuchi-san at the community archive at the Ishinomaki Newsee. The video-display has been divided into themes so that people can choose the interview they would like to see according to their interest. The goal is to have at least 60 life story interviews as part of the Voice of Tohoku archive.
On July 13, Japan Israaid Support Program (JISP) organized a leadership event with Benesse Corporations in Sendai for high school students in the Tohoku region.
The program targeted high school students interested in social entrepreneurship and opportunities of study abroad, and 10 Japanese students from across Japan who had been admitted to Ivy League schools were invited to Sendai to provide a one day creative thinking workshop. 25 high school students participated, and came from over 6 different towns and cities, including areas in Fukushima prefecture. Student groups that included the Ivy League students as well as high school participants spent the day designing ideas and presentations that expressed their opinions about the current situation in Tohoku. Each group had very unique presentations and spoke of a wide range of issues, such as the negative impressions of Tohoku worldwide regarding the radioactivity exposure, the importance of tourism for Tohoku's future, and importantly, the role and responsibility the youth have in shaping the future of Tohoku identity.
On July 14, a similar but smaller program was also run in Ishinomaki for youth who could not participate in the event in Sendai. 8 students participated, and the shorter and less structured event allowed high school students to talk about personal aspirations and goals with the volunteer students. An online group was formed after the workshop, where Tohoku high school students are able to connect with students who are studying abroad for advice and support.
JISP held a very positive meeting with Professor Sato and Naomi Chiba - from Ishinomaki's only university - Senshu. Professor Sato is a clinical psychologist and an avid supporter of expressive therapies. She explained that several of her students are dealing with stress and other emotional issues. A first workshop is now scheduled with students from the "Human Science" program to be held on December 17th. Another workshop is scheduled for March, 2015 and JISP plans to start a long term program with Ishinomaki Senshu University starting in April, 2015. The hope is to establish the University as an academic center dedicated to expressive therapies and psycho-social support.
JISP worked with Morrison & Forrester and other local NPOs to hold a community event at Kazuma Minami Commmity Center in Ishinomaki. The event was a collaboration between local and Tokyo residents and included food, shows, games and fun!
Voices of Tohoku Archive opens @ Ishinomaki Newsee
In May, 2014 Mrs. Atsuko Fish of the Fish Family Foundation visited Ishinomaki and took an active part in a Dance Movement Therapy (DMT) workshop hosted at the Sakura Juku in Ishinomaki. Two other DMT workshops were held in Ishinomaki in June and one July. Mrs. Fish wrote:; "It was very productive trip to Ishinomaki. I am glad to have experienced the healing training." She also visited the "Voices of Tohoku" archive at Ishinomaki Newsee, and the Taylor Anderson Reading Corner at Mangokuura Elementary School and the new one at Ishinomaki High School.
The Editor in Chief of the Hibi Shimbun newspaper in Ishinomaki, Mr. Takeuchi, who also runs the Ishinomaki Newsee will provide mental care support to Ishinomaki residents through ten columns written by JISP to be published in the Hibi Shimbun. The columns will address questions from the residents regarding issues such as PTSD and depression. Two board members, Lori Henderson and Andy Anderson, visited Mr. Takeuchi in June and July and heard first hand how he feels they are at risk of losing a generation of children to PTSD. He has volunteered to organize a mothers group for an expressive art therapy workshop.
A two day youth leadership workshop was held on July 13th and 14th with fifteen students from Tohoku and Japan. The program was conducted by JISP representatives and Benesse Corporation. The purpose of the program was to introduce Tohoku high-school students to to the idea of studying abroad and to train them in creative thinking and entrepreneurship skills.
More than 30 Ishinomaki residents have now recorded Voices of Tohoku interviews which will be edited to place in the Ishinomaki Newsee community archive.
Today, May 7th, 2014, is BONUS DAY when 30% of donations are matched by Global Giving. Please consider this opportunity and tell your friends and family!
The "Voices of Tohoku" community video archive was officially installed at the Ishinomaki "Newsee" on April 27th. The Newsee is a news museum started by Takeuchi-san from the Ishinomaki Hibi Newspaper. He is the managing director of the newspaper and head of the news department, and was responsible for the handwritten wall newspapers that became famous in the time of the disaster. They are also on display at the Newsee. We expect the community archive to be the source of many community and eduational activities now that the first 50 video stories are availalbe to view at the Newsee.
We also wanted to let you know that your donation helped make this a very successful campaign which the Richmond newspaper recently noted www.timesdispatch.com/business/local/notable-gifts-taylor-anderson-s-legacy-lives-on-after-tsunami/article_90773f12-c2dd-535f-b232-2bf07e63652f.html.
Until our project is fully funded, we will be sending you regular reports about our work. You'll know what your donation has helped fund, what accomplishments we have achieved and what our current needs are. Another good way to follow the fund's activities is to "Like" our Facebook page where we regularly post the latest news about the fund. Please visit us there at www.facebook.com/taylorandersonmemorialfund.
Thank you again for your donation and consideration.
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