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09/28/2006

Distribution of sanitary goods and set of tool for removing debris

Et_taibe_11_1     23rd August, Toshihiro Yuasa who was dispatched to Lebanon for emergency assistance passed away because of a sudden sickness. Thank you for your condolence and encouragement. JEN continue emergency assistance for people under harsh condition in Lebanon.

    International airport in Beirut restarted on 7th September. In south area where violent combat happened, Army of Lebanon and UN provisional army of Lebanon started bomb disposal after retreat of army of Israel.

     In south area many building were destroyed, also some people are living in destroyed buildings. But they don’t have enough tools so they can’t remove debris surely.
JEN plan to distribute emergency aid supplies for about 400 families in Nagatiyeh, which is close to border between Lebanon and Syria.

    JEN will distribute goods people need most now such as sanitary goods (towel, bucket, bubble, cattle, detergent and teeth brash) and sets of tools for removing debris (wheelbarrow, shovel and hummer).

September 28, 2006 in Lebanon |

Fireflies at Iketani

1_29_2     The fourth round of Niigata volunteer activity was held from July 14 to July 17 for four days and three nights. In spite of the continuous rain for four days, all of the participants succeeded in finishing the planned practices well, feeling full of health.

    They burned lumber and pieces of furniture in order to dispose of collapsed houses as well as cut grass, cleaned up the fallen trees in the rain. Everyone did work getting sweaty because of an extremely hot fire.

    There were also held so many events such as a watermelon splitting, a barbecue and appreciation of fireflies in addition to agricultural tasks!

    At the third night they communicated with the locals until midnight, drinking tasteful Japanese sake together.

    The four people of the twelve participants have applied again to the volunteer activities within the year. Everyone seemed to be fascinated by appeal of Iketani! 

September 28, 2006 in Niigata |

09/14/2006

Cooperation without Boundaries

Uesugi_at_amman_office200608 Here is a letter from Jordan, signed Nami Uesugi, a Japanese staff appointed to JEN’s Office in Amman in May:

“It is a great pleasure for me to interact with people from different background from my own.  Still, as it is the first time for me to get involved closely in a Muslim society, I had a slight fear before coming to Amman if I could make it in such a new working environment.  However, my fear disappeared as soon as my arrival thanks to kind help of local staff in Iraq and in Jordan.  I would like to write about one of them, a program assistant in Baghdad.  She is such an attractive Venus - it is a pity that I am unable to show her fantastic picture for her security, as unfortunately in Iraq international workers like her have been targeted by militia groups.  When I timidly called her for a work on a holiday, she willingly came to office adding that she even enjoyed a different face of the city from clouded weekdays.  I was impressed by her kindness and passion for work which, despite very difficult situation in Iraq, made me believe again that people could work together without any boundaries.” 

September 14, 2006 in Iraq |

A Gift from God

Water1 JEN started drinking water projects in the Province of Parwan in collaboration with the municipal government.  The Province, despite its potential for economic development as situating in the outskirt of the city of Kabul, has affronted a serious lack of safe drinking water.  In the meantime, unclean water has seriously affected lives of local populations and repatriated refugees in the Province.  JEN’s irrigation projects aim to provide safe clean water by restoring destroyed water pipes and canalising available fountains.  Dsc06404

Villages are sensitive about their water rights.  Local people finally approved JEN’s neutral projects, believing that water is a divine gift from God and thus one should share equally through the JEN’s projects without any discrimination.  The divine water blesses hopefully the future of Afghan population.

September 14, 2006 in Afghanistan |

09/07/2006

Multicultural Volunteers

2_16   "Back then, we used to deliberately leave the roads in gravel to prevent outsiders from coming in. Today, we have volunteers coming to help from all over the world, and I feel I need to adjust my way of thinking to today's flow. Iketani has become international now, too."1_24

    This is what one Iketani villager told us during the 3rd Niigata Agriculture Volunteer Program.

    From the 2-4 of June, 15 employees from a foreign-affiliated company in Tokyo engaged in volunteer activities at Iketani.

    Accepting such participants was a first for both JEN and the people at Iketani. American, Indian, and Romanian nationals helped plant rice seedlings, as well as 7000 seedlings of sweet potatoes. The participants worked at an unbelievable pace, completing work that would usually take 2-3 days for the elderly villagers, in a mere half day.

    Said one participant, sharing a bottle of sake with a villager: "Iketani is such a special place. This was the most fun weekend I have spent since coming to Japan-I definitely want to come back."

September 7, 2006 in Niigata |

Different Forms of Recycling

    Pakistan, and in particular Islamabad, is a heavily littered place. Garbage is omnipresent, with all kinds of trash clogging up empty areas and rivers. Such trash has clogged up the small river in front of the JEN office, leading to increased amounts of water, which in turn has resulted in the mass generation of mosquitoes. There is not yet any system to recycle glass bottles, cans, paper, and batteries as they do in Japan, it seems.2_15

    An interesting incident happened the other day, however. As I went to a major printing ink store clutching an empty cartridge-for recycling purposes-I was looked at in a queer way. In Pakistan, they do not recycle the cartridge itself as in Japan, but reuse it by filling it up again with ink, they say. A surprise it was, but a pleasant one.

September 7, 2006 in Pakistan |