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 Education  Japan Project #19239

Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project

by Hands On Tokyo
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Hands On Tokyo Youth Impact Project
Teens assembling the shelves
Teens assembling the shelves

On July 4th, we went back to the Chofu Gakuen Children’s home to build and place the new metal shelves into the pool lockers we recently painted in April. I gathered six students from ASIJ and SMIS to carry out the project. The new shelves were assembled to replace the deteriorating wooden shelves that were used by the children before. Hironori Kuo and James Newton found and ordered these stainless steel shelves with the help of the Hands On Tokyo office, our adult supervisor, Aya Higa, and your generous donations. We knew that it would be a more sustainable material since the shelves will have to endure the water from the pool and the extremely humid Japanese summers.

We were also asked to move heavy 20 kg boxes of chlorine from the pool locker rooms to the shed. It was a beautiful sunny day and all the teens worked extremely hard to complete the project efficiently and with great enthusiasm.

It was great to come back to Chofu Gakuen Children’s Home and build on the relationship we started with them in the spring. We hope to continue doing more projects with them as the new school year approaches and the new Teen Advisory Board takes action.

The Teen Advisory Board next year will be headed by Theint Theint Thu, from the International School of the Sacred Heart, as the newly elected board president. She is organized, passionate, friendly, and extremely capable, and there is no doubt that the Teen Advisory Board will flourish and grow stronger in her leadership. The Teen Advisory Board is planning to lead the game booth at the Hands On Tokyo annual “Day of Service” festival again in October, participate in supporting the MLB marathon (a new project for us) in early fall, and hold our annual charity concert.

 

Thank you so much. We could not continue our projects or spread teen awareness and passion for volunteering without your continued support! 

The assembled stainless steel shelves
The assembled stainless steel shelves
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With the farmers in Yamamoto-cho
With the farmers in Yamamoto-cho

The past couple of months have been extremely busy for the Hands On Tokyo Teen Advisory Board. Recently, we have welcomed Aoba International School and BST to join our team and have invited them to one of our meetings to explain what Hands On Tokyo is about. We also elected our future President, Vice President, and Secretary for the coming school year. I am confident that our Teen Board will continue to grow and become and even stronger influence as the years go on.

Two weeks ago, eighteen students from the American School In Japan Hands On Tokyo group went on our annual Tohoku trip over the weekend of April 16th. First, we went to Ishinomaki to help out Saito-san’s farm. Saito-san is a farmer who Hands On Tokyo has partnered with since the earthquake hit the northern region of Japan. We sewed rice grains and placed them in the green house. This tedious job is usually done only by around four or five workers, but it was completed in just a couple hours. Everyone not only helped out Saito-san but was also able to learn about the process of farming the rice. Afterwards, we went and visited a couple of elementary schools that were destroyed in the 3/11 disaster. The teen volunteers were able to see the destruction in real life as opposed to the mere photos on television or online, allowing for a deeper connection with and feeling of sympathy for the victims of the disaster. This was a good way to inspire even more passion in the volunteers about what exactly they were there for. The next day we went to the town of Ogatsu to visit the Hands On Tokyo O-Link house and to help paint 1,000 ogatsu-ishi (a slate found only in the Ogatsu mountains) with black ink so that the people can paint them and put them together into a mural; this is to celebrate and motivate the 1,000 people who are left in this town, trying to revive the region. Each ASIJ student was able to paint his or her own message/image onto one of the small rocks, concluding our Tohoku trip. All the volunteers were extremely hard working and responsible students, making this year’s Tohoku trip very successful once again. 

 

Last Sunday, April 24th, the Teen Advisory Board had our painting project at the Chofu Gakuen Children’s home. This project was led by Hironori Kuo and James Newton from St. Mary’s International School. The logistics and details were discussed the week before and we were able to gather over 50 students from the five international schools. We split them up into three groups: painting, gardening, and car-washing. We held a morning and afternoon session but many of the students opted to volunteer the entire day. The pool locker rooms were painted a nice summery green with the help of professional painters who have helped out the teen painting projects in the past. Through this project, the Teen Board was able to create a relationship with the Chofu Gakuen children’s home and we are planning on doing more with them in the future. 

 

Thank you so much for all your support, which has enabled us to carry out various meaningful projects! 

At the O-Link House in Ogatsu-cho
At the O-Link House in Ogatsu-cho
Top Left: painting the pool changing rooms, Top Ri
Top Left: painting the pool changing rooms, Top Ri
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Mr. Paul Kuo talking to the Teen Advisory Board
Mr. Paul Kuo talking to the Teen Advisory Board

For the past three months, our Teen Advisory board has been very busy preparing for our annual charity concert, which we are holding on February 6th at the International School of Sacred Heart, as well as maintaining our monthly meetings to continue communication between the five international schools. Furthermore, a student from Kaisei Highschool, a local Japanese school, asked if he could get his school involved in volunteering through the teen board. We decided to expand our group to Japanese schools as well to reach a larger group of volunteers. Our goal this year is to expand our Teen Advisory board to ten schools and to hold a professional training session for the leaders. This will assure an efficient and successful Teen Advisory board that will be sustainable in the future. Mr. Paul Kuo, a Hands On Tokyo board member, has offered to help us achieve our goal and support us with our future endeavors.

 

Aside from our meetings, we have also been in constant communication through our private Facebook page where we discuss how to get our respective schools involved in the Hands On Tokyo projects. When there are not enough volunteers for one of the regular projects we advertise it in our schools and on our social media to recruit volunteers. The use of social media has brough a lot of attention and awareness to the organization.

 

At Christmas, some of the teens helped put together Christmas gifts for the youth athletes at the Special Olympics motor development program and enjoyed the day with the athletes. It was so much fun!

Teens volunteering at the MDP project
Teens volunteering at the MDP project
A set of Christmas gifts for the MDP project
A set of Christmas gifts for the MDP project
Teen Charity Concert 2016 advertisement
Teen Charity Concert 2016 advertisement
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One of teen teams
One of teen teams

Day of Service is a one-day event which is held for Hands On Tokyo’s partner organizations, corporate sponsors and volunteers to get together and celebrate volunteerism. This year, it was held at Higashi Azabu Kumin Kyodo Space, again for everyone to interact with one another and to get to know about Hands On Tokyo’s activities.  

Day of Service took place on October 4th (Sun.) and it was a beautiful day.  Outside on the field, there were petting zoo, face painting, fire trucks and earthquake experience corners. There were also food booths, such as yakisoba (Japanese fried noodles), hot dogs, Wendy’s chili, cotton candy and ice cream, drink booth, and bake sale.   In the building on the third floor, there were crafts corner, wheelchair and braille blocks experiencing corner, and service dog demonstration.  

As a teen leader of the event, the experience was very rewarding, as many different teenagers from many of the international schools, such as the American School in Japan, St. Mary’s International School, Seisen international School, International School of the Sacred Heart, New International School and students from a Japanese High School,  Kaisei,  worked together to help the community.  

Prior to the event, each student was assigned to run a game for an hour-long shift. We chose an hour long shift because this allowed for more people to volunteer as well as for them to participate and take part in the event itself. We had five games; mini-golf, bowling, strike out, super ball scoop and ring toss. What was amazing and a first time experience for me was that we worked side by side with students from the blind school.  This was a bit challenging at times, but I really felt that we had a good time together. All the volunteers helped each other to make the booth run smoothly and to make sure that the children who came to play the games had a great time.   

Also, there were two high school girls with Down’s Syndrome who led the dance and we all danced together with them. This was also an unforgettable experience, and the girls seemed very happy to take the lead.  With the wonderful weather, people from diverse backgrounds got together as one family and enjoyed the day. It could not have been better. 

At the Day of Service, we had about 510 people: 252 volunteers, 148 from partner organizations and 110 visitors, and we gave back 559.5 hours to the community.  Thanks to all your continued support, we had another meaningful experience. Day of Service was a great success!  And the Hands On Tokyo Teen Group is becoming more and more active and excited about working with the community.  Thank you very much for your donation!

Entertaining children from partner organization
Entertaining children from partner organization
Dancing with Down's Syndrome kids
Dancing with Down's Syndrome kids
Toddlers enjoyed super ball scoop
Toddlers enjoyed super ball scoop
Help kids enjoy ring toss
Help kids enjoy ring toss
Thanks to a beautiful day!
Thanks to a beautiful day!
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Dear Supporter,

    The teen advisory board has been very busy since our last report. The teens left the comforts of Tokyo and spent a weekend volunteering in the Tohoku region.  Almost four years has passed since the magnitude 9.0 earthquake damaged the area, causing one of the most devastating natural disasters on record. With each trip, Hands On Tokyo reassures the local residents that they have not been forgotten.

   In May, seventeen students accompanied by two chaperones travelled to Tohoku from Tokyo. This was made possible by supporters like you! Thank you so much for your support of our teen advisory board. Because of your generous contributions the teen advisory board was able to contribute to  our ongoing efforts in the Tohoku region. We raised $4,150 on Globalgiving so far, and we have $5,850 remaining to reach our minimum fundraising goal. We could use your help and support in getting the word out to others about the campaign underway to meet our goal!

  Here is a recap of the trip from Jennifer the club leader: 

    “We finally arrived at Yamamoto-Cho after 6 hours of traveling. We were in Yamamoto-Cho to help Saito-San,all his crops were destroyed in the tsunami along with his wife. We started by securing the paprika plants so they could continue to grow instead of flopping over to their side. This was a tedious task but no one complained. With 17 people the job was completed quickly and we moved on to the more labour-intensive task of sticking large metal tubes in the dirt to support the structure of the greenhouse. Although this was tough, we were able to get a couple greenhouses completed before we went back to our hotel for the night. Before we left, Saito-san offered us some of his delicious fresh strawberries that we enjoyed looking out at the beautiful mountains. 

    The next day, we traveled to Ogatsu-Cho where we visited the effects of the disaster on an elementary school. This touched the hearts of many of the students as they walked around the rubble viewing the broken down classroom walls and a crumbling painted mural of children holding hands. Then the bus drove us to a rose garden, which was started by Mrs. Tokumizu to give hope to the people because after the disaster the area was left undeveloped and gray. The rose garden was a symbol of regrowth, beauty and color. We pulled the weeds and cut the lavender to make into potpourri. After gardening, we went to visit an elementary school teacher who led us in a simulation of how the kids escaped from the rapidly rising water. We saw rubber balls, wood planks, and other things that got stuck in the tree when the tsunami hit. Then, he showed us a video that was taken on 3/11 of the actual tsunami. It was a very powerful experience. This really stirred emotion amongst the student volunteers and many told me that they would love to go on this trip again on their own time during the summer when they can as well as with the club again next year. 

   I really enjoyed being the trip leader and I am very excited for next year and all the volunteer opportunities to come. I am so grateful to be part of Hands On Tokyo and an active member of the Japanese community.”

Jennifer,  Hands On Tokyo Club Leader

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Organization Information

Hands On Tokyo

Location: Tokyo - Japan
Website:
Project Leader:
Ashma Koirala
Tokyo, Japan
$13,990 raised of $40,000 goal
 
69 donations
$26,010 to go
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