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 Japan
■Message from KnK Executive Director (2011/04/13)

Tokyo, 13th April, 2011

Dear Friends,

One month has been passed since the dramatic earthquake and tsunami attacked Tohoku area.   We just came back in Tokyo  from our second trip to Iwate Prefecture.
After the previous two visits to North Ibaraki and the first visit to the devastated area in Iwate, this second visit was scheduled to meet people in charge of “education departments” at Iwate Prefectural Office in Morioka city and in all cities located along the Tsunami-affecked coast .
We did visit the city office in Morioka, then in Rikuzentakata, Ofunato, Kamaishi, Otsuchi and Yamada.
The initial project is now revised to fit the real needs we have been asked to support from these city offices.

A. First Phase, 19th March - 12th April 2011
No changes from our last message (N° 6) dated 3rd April, but after our second visit to Iwate now we know exactly what will be our contribution in the second phase.
Here is the actual list of items requested (we are receiving calls almost every day to add items to the list), with the first evaluation of the costs. More exact figures will come until the end of this week.

B. Second Phase, Logistic, 13th April the end of June 2011
With “a green light” of Iwate Prefecture, we had meeting with “Education departments” in the five cities mentioned above. These departments are managing 178 Elementary and Junior Schools in total. Among these schools we estimate that around 23 schools are affected, some of them being completely or partly destroyed.
Schools that were not affected are used as shelters and as distribution centers today. These schools should host children from destroyed schools, starting next week, when and if possible.
If support is prevailing almost everywhere in the different devastated provinces, there will be many items which will be forgotten, neglected or considered as a less urgent to be delivered, specifically educational necessaries to re-start schools next week.
With the support of our donors, we have been able to say “yes” to all of the requests below!

1) Yamada City

  1. Gym suits for 710 children and youth and indoor/outdoor shoes for 450 children and youth
  2. One set of PC, server and telephone for teachers,
  3. Two school buses, capacity 40 seats,
  4. One school bus, capacity 25 to 30 seats,
  5. Three school buses, capacity 10 seats,
  6. Complete renovation of 2 buildings, close to City office, not destroyed but not in use for many years. These 2 buildings will accommodate 15 to 20 teachers who lost their houses.

2) Otsuchi City

  1. Four school buses, capacity 25 to 30 seats,
  2. Educational materials,
  3. Wall partitions to create class rooms inside sport gymnasium

3) Kamaishi City

  1. Uniforms and gym suits and indoor/outdoor shoes for 780 children and youth,
  2. School lunch plate wares for 3500 children and youth,
  3. Wall partitions to create class rooms inside sport gymnasiums,
  4. One set of PC, server and telephone for teachers,
  5. Three school buses, capacity 40 seats,
  6. Two school buses, capacity 25 to 30 seats,
  7. Two school buses, capacity 10 seats,

4) Ofunato City

  1. One school bus, capacity 10 seats,
  2. Desks and chairs for teachers.

5) Rikuzentakata City

  1. Water & sanitation system for four schools,

6) Direct support by KnK Japan, during first and second phase

  1. Distribution of small items (blankets, diapers, sports equipment, chocolate, etc.), for approximately 3.5 tons,
  2. Purchase of five vehicles “Suzuki type” (five more to buy now),
  3. Support to a new- established local NGO in Rikuzentakata: two vehicles of “Suzuki”, indemnities for 3 or 4 people for 3 months, cash contribution for gasoline, etc. 

A part of these essential items should be delivered before the end of next week.
The total estimated cost is approximately 240 million yens.

C. Second Phase, Survey, 18th April - 11th May 2011
Not only lives have been taken away, and not only cities, villages, thousands of houses, fishing boats, factories, shops have been erased, but all social links have been destroyed.
We do believe that to re-start school will be essential not only for children and youth but also for all community members.
We already started to visit different schools in the five cities. We shall extend our visits to the most of them, if not all, the Elementary and Junior Schools in that same area.
In this survey we shall make a list of all groups of children or teenagers wishing to re-start social activities besides school.
We also keep the original idea to support five to ten communities or villages, to help them rebuild their lives. Now we know that many community centers (Village’s houses) were destroyed too. These houses are under the direct control of the communities. Some technical and financial supports at that moment might be crucial.

D. Third Phase, May 2011 – March 2012

  1. Support to 50 to 100 social or sports group for children and youth

Sports, photo & video clubs, painting, art, workshops, outing, summer camps, “Reporter for Friendship” ( KnK Japan project “Yujo no Reporter”) etc., we shall support all projects and when necessary we initiate them too, with human res ources, materials and equipments.
In association with the social workers and social services, we shall make sure that no one will be left apart.
Thanks to the financial support from our partners, the total cost of those projects will be around 50 millions yens.

  1. Support to 5 to 10 Communities

We provide our support for rebuilding Village’s houses, community centers and children house or supporting resident s to rebuild their home and their lives or restoring social links within the communities.
Financial support will be around 70 millions yens.

Last words
Concert in Paris, visit of the President of Saint Gobain in Tokyo, meetings with different companies, messages from all over the world (now more than 2,500 messages on our websites), friendly support from so many people. We, KnK Japan and all of you, are very proud to be able  to play our part in such a dramatic situation.
Last week a member of Yamada City office told us “You are giving a lot. I don’t know if we shall be able to give back anything...”
We didn’t tell him how wrong he was to say that.
All these children going back to school, playing again, smiling and laughing are giving back much more than what we gave them.

Our next trip is scheduled from Monday 18th to Saturday 23rd April 2011.

Thank you very much to all of you,

Dominique Leguillier
KnK Executive Director

Donation

 
 
 
 
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