10/23/2014

As a team member of hygiene promotion activity

My name is Bidali Frank. I am a native of Yei River County. I am glad that I am part of this outstanding effort being exerted in the community to inculcate better hygiene behaviors and practices to prevent disease by JEN.
Yei is located in the southern part of South Sudan. It is about 160Km south-west of Juba, the capital of Republic of South Sudan and also that of Central Equatoria State. It is a homeland for the Kakwa people, who are found along the common borders of South Sudan, DR Congo and Uganda. In South Sudan the Kakwa people are found in the two counties of Yei and Morobo.

Yei town, which has in the recent past been promoted into a municipality is one of the rapidly growing towns in South Sudan due to its location and largely because of the hospitable and peace-loving nature of its original inhabitants, the Kakwa people.  It is now one of the most ethnically diverse cities in South Sudan after the national capital, Juba.
It is important to note that as it is characteristic of all post-war communities, the level of education of the people in
Yei is still very low among the metropolitan population and worst among the rural populace.  There is a very high mortality rate from diseases that would be prevented if the people had the knowledge. 

I am very grateful to Japan Emergency NGO (JEN) for coming in to educate the people on the populace of Yei River County on hygiene and sanitation. Within a period of less than 2 years of JEN’s intervention in Yei River County, there  has been a tremendous impact. For instance the cholera outbreak in May 2014 in South Sudan did not kill as many people in Yei as it did in the other affected counties in the country.

I am very much thankful that I take part in this transformation process in villages. Thank to JEN and all its donors. Please do more to save more from death!!

[Bidali Frank (holding the JEN banner on the extreme right in the back row), posing for a group photo with Community Hygiene Club members after a workshop.]
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October 23, 2014 in South Sudan |

Interview to a beneficiary in Kilinochchi

I am a native of Iththavil village. We have 7 children; Eldest daughter aged 19 years old forcibly had to join the Militant group and died during the war. The only permanent income is earning by my daughter who is employed in a garment factory (textiles). This my husband is doing day to day odd jobs from which income I am maintaining my family though it is not enough to fulfil all needs.

About the village, this is a village directly affected by the war and fully destroyed. Houses, common buildings, drainage system and even big trees were completely destroyed. We were displaced from 2004 until 2012. When we came back we saw the village is like a cemetery.

We always think our present living and try to manage with what we earn or have as we realize that this is the only way to make us alive and live peacefully. We do not depend on neighbors to meet our needs. We are confident about hard work, effort and earn is our vision which give us happiness. Our future hope is to educate our children and make them good citizens.

About a Cooperative society, I have no many ideas to share but I know by being working as a group we can save time, share new ideas, support to promote social infrastructure, economic development etc. can be done.

[Beneficiaries]
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October 23, 2014 in Sri Lanka |

10/16/2014

Selection of Distribution Point

Selection of distribution point is one of the challenging task for JEN team. It is a systematic and consultative process described as under

•Planning session
•Identification of Distribution Point
•Assessment by AIM Officer for safety and security
•Final selection and approval by PDMA and 101 Division of army

JEN team holds a brief planning session before identification of Distribution point. In this meeting AIM Unit, Program Unit and admin/logistics and finance unit take active participation and each unit/department give their valuable inputs.

The Geographical location has great importance. The Distribution point should be easily and equally accessible for beneficiaries, vendor, JEN team and the other stakeholders. There should be proper shelter which protects beneficiaries from different elements like rain, sun stroke, violence, militancy attacks etc. The workplace safety and security is most important for smooth, peaceful and successful completion of distributions activities.  JEN team places banners/pamphlets or sign boards and also request to government for police which are helpful to control crowed during distribution.

Service time is also important factor and distribution activity should be completed in time well before dusk. Transparency of project activities like registration of beneficiaries, token distributions and package distribution among beneficiaries is most important factor which reduces the chances of conflicts and distrust between JEN, beneficiaries and other stakeholders.   Active coordination with stakeholders including PDMA, district authorities and army is helpful in reducing the miscommunications and smooth functioning of project activities.

Post distribution evaluation session is also held in office for the purpose of addressing gapes and improvements in future. 



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October 16, 2014 in Pakistan |

Washing hands poster @Haiti

In our office, like other JEN offices overseas, we display JEN’s washing hands poster. Let me take this opportunity to write about “washing hands” with details.

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“Washing hands”. This is for most of people an insignificant unconscious concept. As a Water, Sanitation and Hygiene promotion specialist (WASH) this is much more than a concept. A part of my work is to encourage people to do it the maximum time that they can do and at the crucial time. From my long experience, I have faced several critical times when washing hands was able to decrease significantly an outbreak of any virus or cholera. And if you think that this concept is only for the third world, sorry to say that you are wrong.

In our society this concept was completely neglected after the massive expansion of antibiotic after the Second World War. The idea was that we can kill all disease if we have the correct antibiotic. It’s not rare to have a prescription of antibiotic for a virus. I can remember the last time we had a massive campaign on washing hands in my country; it was for the H1N1 flue. At the end the pharmacy group made more profit with their injection than the cosmetic group with their soap.
Washing hands makes entire sense here because the situation is critical for several reasons. If there is an outbreak of a virus that can be prevent on washing hand you have to make a maximum effort on that.

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First of all, it is because the majority of people do not afford for a medication. Secondly because the health sector doesn’t have the capacity to response to an outbreak etc.

Washing hands it’s not enough to prevent the transmission of disease; it has to be done in a correct way. For instance an efficient washing hand has to be done in 30 seconds. I can assure you that only a small part of our society does it correctly, and we usually call them maniac. I take a bet with you that you take much less than 30 seconds to clean your hands.

The first time I was on the field for a survey, I ask all day long the people to show me how they wash their hands. I was amazed how they proceed. They clean their hands better than a surgeon. Just to say, that the difficulty of our work it’s not only to “teach people how to clean their hands” because they know it, maybe better than me. However the most difficult part is to convince that this effort (including financially) will benefit them.

Finally “washing hands” is not enough it should be complete by “with soap” if we want to be more efficient.

Head of Office, Haiti
Ludovic Blanco


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October 16, 2014 in Haiti |

10/09/2014

Kadonowaki Junior High Student Council Wins Volunteer Spirit Award for its Efforts on "Spreading Flowerbed through Human Connection Movement"

The 18th Volunteer Spirit Award was granted to the student council of Ishinomaki Municipal Kadonowaki Junior High School.

This award aims at developing the spirit of volunteerism among junior-high-school and high-school students by parsing volunteer activities, promoting exchanges with other students, and letting other students know more about volunteer activities.

The criteria for deciding the winner of the award are contribution to communities, creativity, ability to make a plan and execute it out, leadership, and what was learned and felt. These criteria are examined synthetically.

Kadonowaki Junior High School admits the graduates of Ishinomaki Municipal Kadonowaki Elementary School and Omachi Elementary School. The school districts where the two elementary schools are located were severely hit by the tsunami, and in particular Kadonowaki Elementary School was burn down. The tsunami and following fire have left the whole districts including Minamicho town completely changed, and the town looked like “a deserted city” in the students’ eyes who used to live there. “We hope to make a flowerbed in our inflicted school’s playground and make people happy with flowers of many different colors,” that was what they thought, for many people around the country came to Kadonowaki Elementary School to check on the disaster damage..

【Burned-out building and playground of Kadonowaki Elementary School】
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The teachers of the school consulted with the city board of education to realize the students’ idea, but they were told it was difficult to set up a flowerbed in the school premises because the reconstruction plan of the school had yet to be made. JEN helped “the students in the most affected city, Ishinomaki, take the initiative in cheering communities.” JEN rented a vacant lot a short distance back from the school and removed rubbles, weeds and litters from the lot to prepare soil for flowers.

In November 2012, many local people and volunteers cooperated in making a flowerbed and planting tulip bulbs. A surprising number of flowers imbued with the students’ hope bloomed next spring. In the autumn of 2013, the flowerbed was taken over from the second graders who first came up with the idea to the first graders.

【107 students in the second grade and volunteers who helped the students】
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【In May 2013 flowers bloomed in all their beauty.】
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The Volunteer Spirit Award was to reward the students for their efforts to revitalize communities. No doubt Ishinomaki’s future leaders who bear its reconstructions are growing. JEN continues grooming future leaders.


====For urgent donation…↓↓↓↓↓↓
○Postal transfer account No.: 00170-2-538657
Account holder: JEN
Please write “Tohoku Earthquake” on the liaison column.
○Credit card: http://bit.ly/c7R8iA
Please select “Tohoku Earthquake” from the pull-down.

For any inquiries regarding bank transfers, please contact Tomita or Asakawa in JEN Tokyo Office at 03-5225-9352

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October 9, 2014 in Tohoku Earthquake |

Pojulu people

I am Lujang Robert Stephen Yatta Lemi. I am a South Sudanese national and a Pojulu by tribe from Lainya County, Central Equatorial State. I was born in a small village called Loka West, 70 miles away from the capital Juba. I would like to talk about my tribe, Pojulu people.

[A pregnant woman, carrying a child, a bucket of water and a bundle of wood ]
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The Pojulu ethnic groups are of the savanna lands in the White Nile Valley, in the Equatorial region of South Sudan. They are Nilotic peoples and part of the Karo people — which also includes Bari, Mundari, Kakwa, Kuku, and Nyangwara.
The Pojulu divides into smaller clans of Nyori, Morsak, Goduck, Lobora, Mulusuk, Pirisa, Malari, Mankaro and a few other smaller ones. The population of the Pojulu is estimated to be 950,000 (individuals), of whom 250,000 are women.
The majority of the Pojulu population inhabit in Lainya county of Central Equatorial State. The Pojulu are also found in Juba and Yei counties of the state.

[Thatched roofed house of the Pojulu, in South Sudan.]
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Caption:[ Loka West Plantation Teak: the largest teak plantation of my home area.]
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The name Pojulu is derived from several sources. The Pojulu can be differentiated in the way all Bari speakers pronounce words, the way all other Bari speakers say their greetings, and the way each group socialize.

The Pojulu people speak the Kutuk na Pojulu language, as other Karo people, but with particular dialectic variation which highlights the difference between the Pojulu among the Karo. This Bari language has some distinct variations linked to people’s daily activities and traditions that have evolved over time from these experiences.

This is a brief story about my culture of my tribe Pojulu.
Thanks,

Lujang Robert.



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October 9, 2014 in South Sudan, Sudan |

Interview to a beneficiary in Mullaitivu

I am living in Thachadamban with my four children and husband. Two my sons are person with disability. Other one is doing daily odd job and another is a student. I am doing a very small scale home garden to manage daily food consumption, even though I don’t have well. I am fetching water from a neighbor’s house and carrying in buckets and watering to my home garden.

In 1997 I was displaced to an IDP (Internal Displaced People) camp and returned here in 2000. When I returned to my home, I saw my permanent house was fully bulldozed and agro land was used to mine sand to make war related earth bund. Still there are big holes in the land. Then I was displaced in 2008 and returned again on 2010.

JEN has selected me as its beneficiary considering my interest and effort in home gardening. JEN directly visited to my place and checked everything and selected as its beneficiary. I hope JEN assistance will bring very positive changes in our family. It’s happy to think, that doing a home garden with a big agro well sharing my neighbor. My dream is to build a big permanent house through the future yield of home gardening.

JEN cooperative society formation will help us to strengthen our village financially, culturally and socially. Cooperative function will lead us our children in the future to start a big scale business in our village. I thank to JEN and Japanese people for their generous support to develop our life.

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October 9, 2014 in Sri Lanka |

The Iraqi refugees

The United Nations said that more than 1.8 million person leave them cites from the killing of combat and bombarding, 850 thousands from them in Kurdistan governorates. 

With the start of the new scholastic year there are many millions of students moving toward their schools. The scholastic year in Kurdistan must starting in 10-09-2014 and in the other governorates in 21-09-2014.

There are a problem in Baghdad and many suburbs around Mousil and around Salah Al Den as thousands families from Al Mousil or Salah Al Den are using the schools as shelter from the hot weather of summer and the high rent of housing. Many students cannot go back to school.

The government does not have any plan to housing them in caps and saving the water and food for them.

The other problem is the students whom leave them cities cannot going to their schools and the government cannot provide places in the schools for the refugees because of the high number of them.

The problem will be more complexity if the government compel the hundreds thousands families to leave the schools without make space for them in camps. There is a statistical from Kurdistan that 280 thousands refugees are housing in 630 schools only in Duhok .Kurdistan government says that there will be new camps in the next months to housing the refugees, but it is a remaining problem of the schools in the suburbs around Diyal , Salah Al Den , Samaraa and Al Mousil .

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October 9, 2014 in Iraq |

10/02/2014

Volunteer Work Turns into a New Style: 12th “Let’s go to the sea!”

On Monday the 8th and Tuesday 9th of September, “Let’s got to the sea!” was held at Ishinomaki, Miyagi.

The event for the twelfth time was carried out featuring assistance in purifying a festival site and helping organize it, a tour to temporary quarter sites, and fishing experiences at Kyubunnhama. There had been worries whether the event could attract participants for it was timed on weekdays to coincide with the festival, but a total of twenty-one students who were still on summer vacation came to join the event from Aomori in the north from Hiroshima in the south.

Here is a run-down of what the lads who will shape this nation’s future saw and felt through experiences in this event.

“This event help me get more understanding of the present situation in disaster areas; hearing about local's actual experiences straight from their own mouth, being allowed to see the insight of their makeshift quarters, I was deeply shocked; this volunteer activities hit home.”

【The participants toured makeshift quarters.】
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“I learned livening up local events can be an assistance; I think there is so much we can do, I’ll tell my friends what I experienced here so that many people may pay more attention to Tohoku.”

【The participants join a traditional local festival.】
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Coming and seeing Tohoku brought me a lot of discoveries; such as bringing smiles to locals’ faces can make a difference, the importance of doing so, the importance of appreciating those who grow and harvest each food; instead of giving volunteer assistance, I could have an opportunity to learn life lessons.”

【The participants are experiencing fishing.】
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Wrapping up the two-day event, they went home with lessons they could learn all the more because they came to affected areas.

【I’ll come again!】
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Next event will be held in December when oysters are in season. We are looking forward to those who haven’t participated in this event.

====For urgent donation…↓↓↓↓↓↓
○Postal transfer account No.: 00170-2-538657
Account holder: JEN
Please write “Tohoku Earthquake” on the liaison column.
○Credit card: http://bit.ly/c7R8iA
Please select “Tohoku Earthquake” from the pull-down.

For any inquiries regarding bank transfers, please contact Tomita or Asakawa in JEN Tokyo Office at 03-5225-9352

【Click here to know more about JEN 20th Anniversary innitiative】

October 2, 2014 in Tohoku Earthquake |

Shelter Support for IDPs – Case Study

Mr. Abdul Wahab is 24 years old , belongs to Tappa Mermat khail , Kurram Agency FATA.  He and his family are living in UC – Shah Pur, District Kohat.  He has 07 dependents i.e. mother, father, Wife, 03 daughters and 01 son.  He is the only supporter of whole family. At origin he was working as daily wage labour and the rest of his family was working in their small agricultural land to support family.
Abdul Wahab and His family migrated from Kurram agency to Kohat due to Military operation against militants and are living with their relatives. According to his father “we left everything at our homes and everything Is destroyed at origin and Abdul Wahab got mental illness from this war. Now I am working as labour in this old age with Wahab in this situation because we have no way to support our family”.
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Wahab’s family is very poor and deserving and the JEN team identified them during door-to-door registration of TDPs (Temporary Dislocated Persons/families) for JEN-ERF project in Kohat. They are living with host family and all in one small room.  They were used to live on ground due to no beds. Their family is supported by community, receiving food from WFP. The JEN team gets him registered for Shelter NFI project keeping in view their ultimate needs and provided shelter NFIs package.

According to Wahab’s Father “ No doubt that any humanitarian assistance can’t fulfill our requirements but such type of assistance/support makes our lives easy to some extent and the shelter NFI package is very useful for us”.   
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Shelter is the basic and high priority need of the Displaced Peoples in Kohat, Shelter for both human’s and livestock, the government and  humanitarian organizations should work more in this sector because most of the TDPs families are living with Host families in very congested environment and are burden on host community/families.


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October 2, 2014 in Pakistan |