By Yutka Kikugawa, Mika Kakihara - Executive Director, Translator
Thank you very much for your contributions to the Typhoon Hagibis Relief Fund for Soma Children. The total amount of donations received from around the world was 2,406,928 yen, or almost 23,000 US dollars including 550 USD channeled through the GlobalGiving, which was a great help to the children of Soma to continue their music activities.
Fortunately, we only had to purchase instrument cases and mouthpieces. Thanks to the efforts of skilled repairers at local music stores, Oasis and Takano, we were able to restore the soprano, alto and tenor saxophones by disassembling, cleaning and replacing some parts, and the cellos and double basses by drying them out and partial repairs. We are also pleased to report that the ten Koto harps (a traditional Japanese instrument) that were damaged, including those owned by nearby high schools, have been restored by drying them out and replacing all the strings.
Since March, activities of both the Soma Children's Orchestra and the Soma Higashi (East) High School Wind Ensemble have been suspended as a precaution against the COVID-19 spread. The situation remains calm in Soma and the activities are now resuming, albeit with some restrictions. The cancelled 6th El Sistema Children's Music Festival in Soma is now rescheduled for this December 2020.
We hope you will continue to follow the activities of the children of Soma as they are conquirng their challenge through music.
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