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10/31/2011

【Community Space】 Flip Flop making class at common room.

On October 28, at the community space in Nakayashiki district, Flip Flop making class took place with collaboration from a local NPO in Ishinomaki "Association for encouraging people by handcrafting".

In the class, participants were divided into groups, thong making team and sole making one and they preceded their parts cheerfully. In order to make thongs, you have to repeat the process of first stitching inside-out cloth on a sewing machine and then turning it back. There is a trick of turning it back. The participants were finishing off turning the thongs back neatly using long chopsticks.

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In order to make a sole, first you have to hook a plastic cord on a hanger to make it the sole interlining and then knit up small strips of cloths, which cloths were relief supplies from all over Japan but left without takers. Participants learned about details from an instructor and were caught up in their work.

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In the afternoon, the thong team joined the sole team. Participants were seen to teach each other what they had learned from the instructor. "We might as well use this cloth sandal in our makeshift housing.", "It might be good for floors.", they were saying.
The thongs were reworks of disaster affected cloths from taken down houses after the disaster, thanks to those house owners. Filling the thongs with breath of the disaster, the cloth sandals were finished off one by one.

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Participants are now thinking of how to make use of and deliver to their supporters those finished Flip Flop.

October 31, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/27/2011

A ceremony to celebrate the completion of a well.

The last Sunday became an important day for Pierre Lewis.

It's all because the members of the well administration and management committee and JEN's staffs have worked hard for over six months that digging a new well completed and its ceremony was held. Those members who learned how to administrate the well now try to start a new and ever unattempted mechanism that collects money as dues so that people in village can use water for the period ahead.

As people have been using water from a river so far, they didn't have a custom to pay for water. That's why the mechanism is new to them. Collected dues are deposited in a local bank and used for administrating and maintaining the well. This allows the people in the village unable to continue to access safe water by themselves without depending on any support from outside.

The local people prepared the ceremony: their traditional music was played and children's dance was also exhibited on stage. As the entire village was looking forward to this ceremony, many people participated in it. The dance continued before sunset and the ceremony was brimming with smile.

October 27, 2011 in Haiti |

Workers behind the scenes

In the last activity update we showed you the construction sites, where we find workers who are involved in the actual construction works, workers who provide technical support, or those who manage the construction schedule.

However, there are also other important players. Yes, that’s right. I mean the workers  who manage the construction materials. Let’s focus on those workers today.

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The workers always confirm the quantity of the construction materials when they arrive from the suppliers to the warehouse or when they are transferred from the warehouse to the construction sites.

Delivering the right amount of the necessary materials according to the construction schedule is also an important part of operational management.

By the way, we are still in the dry season here in the Northern Province and it was also a very sunny day when we took this photograph.

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We can see the truck driver’s ingenious idea to avoid scorching himself from the sun-heated seat.
Using the leaves from the trees seems very Sri Lankan, as the country is rich in vegetation.

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What do you think the man in the third photograph is doing?
He is also one of the workers at the warehouse. He is using a newspaper to wrap the nails by the quantity required for the construction of a shelter.
There is a long list of materials which he needs to pack, such as hinges and locks.

It is these backstage works that ensure the smooth operation at the construction site.

October 27, 2011 in Sri Lanka |

Trainings for Repairing Hand Pump have been started

Training for repairing and maintenance of hand pump installed to deep-wells this year were started at Kajo Keji county. There are three targets to achieve.

1)Regular pump inspection skills
2)Simple repairing skills
3)Supervise skills for complicated repairing

Those aimed that people can keep using well-water by using the pumps installed by JEN as long as possible.

This is a hand pump for trainings (India Mark-II)
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There were 15 participants in which three of them had helped repairing hand pumps, four of them had repaired bicycles and one of them had repaired motor cycles. None of them had experienced mechanic training. They had to learn at least simple repairing skills in 10 days training.

Here is a photo of the participants
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The trainers were engineers from Water dept. of county and state. They were used to teaching the skills with questioning to trainees skillfully. There were lots of things to remember such as pump parts, repairing tools and method of repairing. 

Repairing tools
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Here is a brief explanation of dismantling and assembling of barrels which has the most complicated structure in the hand pump parts. This barrels are important parts of sending water to the pump.
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These consisted of metal parts and rubber packing like the photo below.
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Firstly, Christine, one of the trainers, shows actual dismantling and assembling of them. 
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Then, the trainees practiced those in pairs.
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They processed it with many tries and mistakes such as fixing the parts upside down or putting wrong amount of packings since it was their first experience to do it.
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They fixed the parts firmly using repairing tools which they were taught the day before. When they practiced dismantling and assembling them within 10min, the participants who were not engaging in assembling were not only observing but also pointing out when the colleague made mistakes.
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Lastly, they checked if it sucks water in a bucket.
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Completed!!
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After the practice, it is time for delicious lunch.
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The lunch was Liro  (Balinese: Ugari in Swahili) made with corn flour and goat stew.
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After lunch, everyone was eager to review the lesson to prevent from forgetting the contents until afternoon training began without break.
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JEN would provide the well maintenance and management training one more time for another group in Kajo Keji county and two more times in Morobo county after the training for this group was completed.

This project was supported by JPF and supporters.

October 27, 2011 in South Sudan |

10/25/2011

【Livelihood】 Carrying soil to neighboring Onagawa

On October 23, we helped carry fertile soil to a farm land in Onagawa. A land owner who has a problem with sight offered his land for farming for those who are living in makeshift housing complex nearby.

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The land owner owns the housing site and, thanks to his courtesy, it was realized to construct makeshift housing complex and for thirty one families to move in them. The Misato Social Welfare Conference or MSWC talked a farmer into using the farmer's fertile soil. In response, five trucks headed to the farmer's house, which trucks belong to a forwarding agency that is providing JEN transportation service with those trucks.

On their arrival, it looked like an easy job to load the soil onto all those truck all at once using the farmer's power shovel, but muddy road by yesterday's heavy rain prevented it and so only a truck of soil was completed after hours of struggle. In this way along with people from MSWC, the soil was carried to Kojohama in Onagawa next town of Ishinomaki where people were waiting for it.

At Kojohama, two students from Koushida agricultural high school in Oosaki district, a student from Sendai Ikuei Gkuen school and ten local volunteers were waiting for the soil to arrive. They leveled unloaded soil on the farm land; made ridges; sowed seeds. One of the land owner's desires, who is totally blind, born fruit through people's warm assistance. When a staff member of Japan Platform, a JEN's partner, visited Onagawa, the staff got to know that local people were trying to realize a farm land and had troubles. This led to this volunteering activity. Soil and trucks were necessary to develop a farm land and they had difficulty in getting them. So they came to ask JEN for helping hand. JEN Dscn0590_640x480

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concluded that, that being the case, JEN should help them. Then JEN immediately called for its forwarding agency to come and help JEN.

This was how the farm land was realized in corporation with many people such as MSWC, JPF, the land owner who offered his rot, people who use it, and JEN. Thank all of you for your corporation.

October 25, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/24/2011

【Physco-Social Care】Nine pupils

~At Oginohama primary school in Ojika peninsula~

On Oct. 22, a 'show and tell' took place at Ogihama primary school in Ojika peninsula and JEN joined it as an audience where JEN's volunteers have visited time and again and are totally familiar with the principal and the pupils. Local people who gathered in the gym were pleased to reunion and their familiar voices were heard here and there, like "It's been a long time. Have you been fine?"[

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The tsunami swept over Oginohama primary school playground and a stream nearby by and traffic signals and utility poles in front of the school were leveled to the ground. JEN has engaged in removing sludge from the school, its periphery and cleaning up the stream. And so the stream now is so pure that sweet fish came back. Just when the pupils got pleased with that, landslides caused by the typhoon 15 made our efforts go down into the drain.

Local people call landslide "Yama-tsunami"(Tsunami from the mountain). However, after the landslide JEN continued its efforts to remove sludge from the playground and its periphery along with volunteers.

The number of pupils of Ogihama primary school has dwindled one by one to nine from twenty-one due to transference. Even the 'show and tell' with only nine pupils, they danced 'The Soran' dance lively.

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Then, old six friends of theirs came in and reunited. All told, fifteen pupils danced ' Oginohama primary school Soran ' bravely in front of the many people.

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The energetic dance by those pupils who have been brought up with sea moved audiences' hearts.

"Thank you!",
"We want more!"

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the whole floor burst into cheers. Their remarks "Whatever happened, this is our hometown." and a song "Furusato" or 'my hometown' sang by all of the participants impressed us greatly.

Like this, JEN will help local people rebuild their life step by step sharing in spirits with them.

Those pupils lifted spirits of JEN's staff and volunteers. In return, JEN along with volunteers will tomorrow give people's spirits a lift at another place.

October 24, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

【Volunteer Dispactch】Still on-going at inflicted houses

Period: 7/10/2011-13/10/2011
Total participants: 3083 volunteers

We engaged in helping an affected resident clean up their house at Urayashki district.
Water had reached high up to the ceiling of its first floor.

Day one, we completely removed sludge piled up beneath its first floor. Day two, we applied some antiseptic to its bases and joists so that people may be able to live there again.
He was so moved that he could not help having watery eyes and thanked us saying, “I haven’t’ see any people like you who helped me overcome difficulties after the March disaster.”

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THe owner of the house was at first thought that he would have to accept the demolition of his house. “- but now I think I can see a light in the future.” said he quite hopefully.

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Within a stone’s cast off the main street, there were quite a few houses which have not yet been untouched. JEN will continue to meet every call for help from individuals.

October 24, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/20/2011

【Temporary shopping center】Encourage younger generation

Img_1383 It has been two weeks since the construction of “Noren-Gai” mall started.

As I heard that remarkable progress has been seen, I accompanied a person in charge who was heading to the constructing site. You can see how “Hanjokigann-sai” or the ceremony to celebrate good business was taken place in this picture.

The framework of the mall has been completed. In one of two mall-blocks, the installation of insulators was already finished. The construction contractor is from Fukushima neighboring prefecture, he himself has also been inflicted by the March disaster.

With so many refurbishments and building new houses asked by local clients to get through, he was managing nearly ten carpenters to complete building “Noren-Gai” as quickly as possible, where about 4,000 people in Ojika would come to shop daily.

This footage was taken by chance. A young man in the picture(at left) had others' attention, running and skipping busily, lightly here and there with a bunch of documents in his hand.
He is the youngest shopkeeper in sixteen shops in “Noren-Gai” and going to run a grocery.
You can notice his resolution even from his outfit. The temperature of that day was below twenty centigrade.

On October 23, she will come to Tokyo to participate in an event making time amid the construction.

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Before the March earthquake, the coastal water body around Ojika Peninsula was a very rich fishery and it was the core business to sell marine products caught there.

After the disaster, he resolved to live up to the expectations of elder people around him because they told him how crucial it was to recover marine products processing business there which could employ a lot of local people, prevent them from fleeing there and sell those products as the staple products there. And so I decided to back his great resolution.

Volunteers who engage in support can give a trigger to restart to those who receive the support but simply by that any outcome won't be expected. It is not until cooperation with those local people followed by their own one-step toward restarting is secured, that the support results in self-reliance. I greatly thank all of the people in Ojika for their corporation.

October 20, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

Beetal Goats

Goats are important for poor livestock farmers to make a living.

It is said that there are over 50 million goats in Pakistan. The species are various. Some species are good for meat or milk production. Beetal goats are famous for its milk production and meat.

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JEN has a project that distributes pregnant beetal goats to IDPs, internal displaced persons, living in Dera Ismal Kahn. Compared with temporary distribution of NFIs, Non-Food Items, or coupon, beetal goat distribution is expected for sustainable financial and health effectiveness.

Let me tell you how beetal goats distribution affects to IDPs’ households.

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1.Financial effectiveness

Rearing beetal goats enhances financial situation of IDPs. JEN supports Masud tribe evacuated from South Waziristan Kalusha, who originally earned from agriculture and livestock farming. JEN’s survey revealed that one household of Masud tribe consumes milk about two liters per day. If they hold a beetal goat, which produces 2-3 liters of milk every day, they can save spending for milk. JEN distributes pregnant goats, which means IDPs can either rear goats for breeding or produce milk productions.

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2.Health effectiveness

IDPs can improve health by taking necessary nutrition from milk or meat from beetal goats. Milk contains vitamins and meat is a good resource of protein. Rearing goats are expected to lead to decrease the number of people with malnutrition. Children were not able to have a chance for education and have enough time at the evacuation site, but instead, they can take care of the goats, playing with them or taking them out for grazing.

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Goats distribution will last until the end of October. The livestock instructors who have been trained by expertise will show IDPs how to manage and rear goats properly.

October 20, 2011 in Pakistan |

Skill up at the security training course

For 5 days from the 2nd of Oct., there was a joint security training course for the staff of the JEN Afghanistan and Pakistan. The participants are seven from the local staffs of the managing class who plays an active supporting role in the field in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and two from the international staff who are stationed at the Islamabad office.

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All staff listed above all gathered at Islamabad and took the courses at the Islamabad Police Academy.

This training course was consisted by two workshops, which was “the personal security” and “security risk management (SRM)”.
This was a program that was specialized for the local staff in Afghanistan and Pakistan who actively work at the field to respond either in emergency or daily.

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We were informed about the risk that can happen during our daily life, the risk in specific in area like Afghanistan and Pakistan, the risk at dangerous zones by the two security trainers. Two security trainers informed, used videos and had group discussion in order to understand the contents.

We practiced an exercise drill by summarizing the risk in a table matrix, evaluate and manage. Other than this, there was a simulating exercise to deal with these risks in teams.

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In concrete, there were practical course like how to save lives, first aid, how to use GPS, stress management, crisis management avoid danger through practical drills.

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The areas where JEN is acting are mostly under risk. In that kind of circumstance, it is very important for the staff to achieve the capability to understand and deal with these various crises.

In order to precede the project we must manage the risk not to experience the training that was received. 

We will continue to work smoothly on the project at Afghanistan and Pakistan for the people who need aid.

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The toilets, the well and water utilities construction and the classroom and outer wall of the school is under construction in the 14 schools of Saran, Parwan.

October 20, 2011 in Afghanistan |

Voices from a Junior High School in Bagdad

JEN conducted interviews at a junior high school, which JEN supported renovation. We got voices from the school:

Principal Moqdad Hamdy
“I’m really glad that the renovation has finished before the new school year. Under the circumstance of clean classrooms and washrooms, students will be able to concentrate on their study. We learned the importance of cleaning at the hygiene workshop and we will try to keep the school clean.”
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Mohamad Fadhel, 14, 2nd grade
“I want to be a doctor. After the school became clean, I like school more than before. Now that we can use tap water, we don’t have difficulty with drinking water at school anymore.”
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<School yard>
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<Renovated water supply>
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<Washrooms for students>
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October 20, 2011 in Iraq |

10/19/2011

【Disaster Risk Reduction】 Improve living environment at a temporary shelter

On Oct. 16, a disaster risk reduction workshop took place at a temporary shelterunder the guidance of the Ojika district office of the Onagawa fire department. JEN had conducted the workshop for other countries, too.

JEN also provided them for victims of the cyclone disaster in Myanmar and the massive earthquake in Kashmir, Pakistan in 2005 as a relief activity. Just like this, in natural disaster-affected areas, JEN had always been engaged in conducting disaster risk reduction workshop to be well prepared for future natural disaster.

Now, back to the relief activity for the Great Eastern Earthquake. Currently, temporary shelters are equipped with fire extinguishers at every door but water tanks for fire extinction and sewerage system are not built. In order to strength the further disaster prevention, this workshop will play a great role.

On this day, about twenty people especially elder persons joined. Under the guidance of fire department officials they got training for how to call for an ambulance and conduct initial extinction in case of fire or emergency.

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"When a fire breaks out, first you must elevate your voice so as to make yourself heard and report to the fire department quickly without trying to put out the fire by yourself" said the officer, and they listened carefully with great interest.

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JEN, on that day, delivered dry-chemical extinguishers to each family and will continue to conduct disaster drills at other makeshift housing for the period to come. JEN would help enhance awareness of disaster prevention and, especially among other things, maintain the environment so that local people who have just started their new life can live peacefully in the makeshift housing complex where many people are living together.

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October 19, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/18/2011

【Livelihood】 A head office for the emergency response to disaster in Higashihama district disbanded.

JEN has been engaged in supporting people in Higashihama since July. JEN cooperated with people there in carrying in and neatly delivering vegetables, fruits, rice and so forth for all of the families in Higashihama.

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This support ended by the end of October. Mr. Toyoshima who was the member of the head office recalled like this, "We should not continue to receive help without limitation, we must make self-reliant efforts toward recovery from now on." His strong remark told us his resolution toward recovery.

"It'll take much more time to recover and rebuild, but we do make desperate efforts.", said a ward head.

On Oct. 14, seven months ago on this day the head office kicked off, its closing ceremony took place.

Higashihama was marooned area from helping hand, because roads to these areas remained shut down due to the disaster. Under such conditions, the head office was organized on March 14. After the self defence force began its relief operations, the head office took people's daily order at every district and listed necessary relief goods, then waited for those goods from the self defence force.

JEN's vegetables support ended, but, as people said "We want to start our previous business as quickly as possible", JEN decide to begin supporting fishing equipment instead.

JEN will continue to support people in Higashihama who made a new start toward recovery and rebuilding so that they might be able to put their life back as quickly as possible.

October 18, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/17/2011

【Volunteer dispatch】Do you remember volunteering at a greenhouse in June?

JEN engaged in removing sludge from the greenhouse at Watariha-nekishimae district deploying all of the volunteers sent from companies. Although it was before summer, we struggled too much as if we were working in a steam bath.

You can see how hard it was from this picture.

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The other day, we received a message from the greenhouse owner. He told us that they had harvested autumnal vegetables without failing!! but those veggies had not grown big enough to sell at markets as usual but he would continue to grow them.

Thank those who struggled in the greenhouse! We are looking forward to seeing you at Watanoha.

October 17, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/14/2011

Restoration of livelihood and dispatch of volunteers – helping oyster farming in Kozakihama in Oshika Peninsula

Period: 2011/11/4-11/10
Cumulative total number of volunteers: 3422
Cumulative total number of volunteers supporting fishery: 356

Today, Friday, November 11, the volunteer activity is making matrices for oyster farming in Kozakihama for the second time. These matrices are for oysters that will be used in summer next year. This year as the oysters have been washed away by the tsunami, a larger number will be needed; therefore they have to be prepared from now.

This time 20 employees of Prudential Life Insurance, and 10 employees of Mitsui Bussan participated.
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At first they were a bit awkward, and working cautiously, “Is this OK?” However, as time passed they got used to it, and even devoted the intermission to be absorbed in the work.
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At last everyone was competing how many they could make in the time limit.
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When we asked for comments they said that it was difficult, they could attain a mental state with nothing present, could train their power of concentration, etc.

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Also, it was very impressive that they had a pleasant chat with local fisherpersons during the work.

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Finally we took a group photo. This amount of matrices has been completed.

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When they were going back, they surely got tired all of a sudden. We really appreciate their hard work. Thank you.
It will be from around fall the year after next when they can harvest the oysters on the matrices we made this time. All we hope is that everyone’s wish for reconstruction will bear fruit in fall 2013, and bring a smile.

October 14, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/13/2011

Well management Committee to start functioning! 5W1H??

JEN has been struggled to put a well administration and management system on track with the committee members. They are chosen by voting and serve without pay. Some of them declined to take part on the committee, because they realized how much works they have to handle when they actually get down to work.

Although those who remained in the committee are busy at their work, they managed to spare time for meeting with JENS's local staffs twice a week and make rules about how people share the well. JEN alone can lay down rules easily but the most important thing is to make them fit reality through discussing among the members.

For that reason, the rules were adopted one by one, after all members agreed why a rule was necessary.

Now that it was the time to unveil the rules, people were invited to the meeting of the committee. The formal introduction of the committee came first followed by explaining the rules. The people present receive explanation about how to collect dues, who is to hold them, how they are used and how information is shared. As a rehearsal beforehand was critical for giving a plain presentation, we had its simulation with JEN's staff. Our effort paid off and so the registration of well users has already begun. That was a meaningful progress in such area where people hadn't had a custom to pay for water.

October 13, 2011 in Haiti |

Updates on the construction of shelters and latrines

With the financial assistance from Japan Platform and JEN’s supporters, JEN is currently repairing/cleaning wells and constructing shelters and latrines in Mullaitivu District, Northern Province, as part of the Livelihood Rehabilitation Project for the Returnees.

Let’s have a look at the construction sites of shelters and latrines. It takes about 1 week to complete one shelter or latrine.

Shelter 1: First of all, we make geometric measurements and then dig the places where we need to mount the pillars.
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Shelter 2: We then position the wooden pillars, processed to protect them from insects and corrosion, and fill the spaces with concrete blocks.
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Shelter 3: Here, the roof has been constructed. The next step will be to make the floor and the walls. Of course, we will put doors with locks.
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Latrine 1: The photograph shows the construction of a storage tank for the latrine. It is large enough to last for 3 to 5 years. 
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Latrine 2: A toilet bowl is installed in an individual cabin, which is connected to the storage tank by a pipe. This latrine will be completed once the door is installed.
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October 13, 2011 in Sri Lanka |

Construction of Latrine is led by Citizen

School latrine construction this term would be led by the community. It made that small breaks would be mended by community members and they would also be able to construct additional latrines by themselves as needed.

In middle of September, young people in the villages gathered and were trained of necessary skills. Three people form each village, in total 18 people participated in the training from Morobo county. There were lots of things to learn such as the method of piling bricks, making cement floor of the toilet and distinguishing stoned which can be added to the cement.

When they returned to their villages, they must lead the latrine construction, therefore they made their best effort to learn those.

This photo shows the work of tying up the wires of reinforced concrete for toilet floors.
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It is also a part of training to crash stoned in large pieces for suitable size to adding cement.
It was roasting, however, everyone made material for practice by themselves with their very best.
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Here is a result of the work in which they mixed cement and gravel and cast them into types. The latrine would be crouching down type thus a hole in the middle was needed. The things easily obtained were used as material for instance  the front in the photo is rolled paper bags of cement, the middle is plastic containers and the rear is soil bricks, although it is difficult to see.

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The work below was surprising. They set a spade under the net and hit by hummer. This is for cutting the net. We were told that we can cut nets in that way if there are no tools to cut it such as nippers.
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At the back of the training center, a lady chef cooked lunch. Beans stew, looks delicious
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This project is supported by JPF and every supporter.

October 13, 2011 in South Sudan |

10/11/2011

【Community Space】Traditional and local flavored HotPot takes place at Kazumaminami district

A party to celebrate fall harvest where people enjoy over Japanese hotpot , Imonikai, took place at Kazuma-Nishi park on October 9.

Many people from children to elderly people gathered that day: children enjoyed playing soccer, catch, painting and drawing lots before the nabe was ready to eat. On the other hand, the elderly were sitting seats prepared in tents and enjoyed talking each other.

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In the scene of drawing lots contest, an elder boy was seen to encourage a younger one who got disappointed at failing in winning a lottery he aimed at, saying, ‘Don’t let it get you down, you may be able to try for again’.

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Two different hotpot were prepared, Miso-based one which is favored in Miyagi prefecture and soy sauce-based one in Yamagata prefecture.

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The elderly were enjoying those nabes talking each other about what they had been doing lately.

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Some of them enjoyed both Miyagi-favor nabe and Yamagata-favor nabe and some others looked forward to the next party to be held, and so they didn’t seem to run out of conversation topics. As such, the first 'Imonikai' was full of peoples’ laughing all day long.

October 11, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/09/2011

【Livelihood】 People prop up each other for their home town, Kitakami No.2

~ The tsunami reached up to eleven kilometers away from the mouth of a river.  ~

The transportation company who participated in the first social contribution activity on October 4, took part in the second one at a place near Kawakita police office.

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Although that place is located inland far away from the coast, it was inundated with the tsunami. On measuring the distance from there to the nearest mouth of the Kitakami River, we found out that the tsunami ripped through the Kitakami river for about eleven kilometers.

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Insofar as I can see on a picture, that place is located in such an inland area that it's difficult to imagine what happened. On looking around, you can notice the trace of fifty centimeters deep tsunami. The tsunami obliterated the ridges of rice fields and so the agency helped piling up gravel on those breached ridges as a social contribution activity.

Our program for recovering people's life is taking place in corporation with supporters and Japan Plat Form.

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October 9, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/07/2011

【Temporary Shopping center】 Awaited temporary shops to open at Ayukawahama district in Ojika peninsula!

  Ayakawa dictrict in Ojika peninsula, where district had been thriving as a fishery town, was deadly inflicted by the disaster and many of the business owners there lost their stores.

JEN has been supporting to construct 'Ayukawahama Norenngai', a temporary shopping center as a stronghold of their recovery so that people in Ayukawahama may be able to recover their living and stimulate businesses in corporation with the chamber of commerce of Ishinomaki city, that of Ojika where Ayukawahama belongs and Ojika Recovery Support Conference.

Finally, the construction has completed. On Oct. 6, 'Hanjo-kigannsai' a ceremony to pray for good business in Ayukawahama and 'Shichifukujinnmai' a local performing art by people there took place and many joined them.

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'Ojika Revival shopping stall' which has been taking place once a week since June will open permanently as 'Ayukawahama Norenngai', a temporary shopping mall. All told, sixteen stores will start business there; they are ranging from fresh food stores, living ware stores, drug stores, and restaurants. It's going to open at middle of the November.

JEN's recovery assistance still continues in the period ahead. We would like you to come and get a feeling of vitality here in Ayukawahama.

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October 7, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/06/2011

Call for volunteers in October.

Tohoku Area was devastated by the earthquake and tsunami on March 11. JEN has sent over 3,000 volunteers to Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, by September. About 20 volunteers participated each day to remove debris and sludge, and to distribute relief supplies to temporary housings.

After 6 months from the earthquake, sceneries by the main roads have come back to how it was before. On the other hand, there are still many needs of volunteering at houses and public spaces, including evacuation centers, and factories where they need help on cleaning up to re-start their business. Also, volunteer support is needed for fishery reconstruction.

We can all support those people to make a first step to regain their livelihoods and be optimistic about their future again.

Thank you very much for your support.

<Terms and conditions>
1. Transportation to and from Ishinomaki must be organized by the volunteers.
2. Volunteers will work and lodge in groups.
3. Volunteers need to bring a sleeping bag, food and drinks for their consumption, work clothes (rubber boots, rubber gloves, long sleeve T-shirts and trousers).
4. Volunteers need to be covered by volunteering insurance.

<Schedule>
October 2011 – February 2012
*Volunteering activities are closed on Mondays and Tuesday (from October 2011)
*Minimum activity period is 1 day. Weekday activities are welcome.
*Application deadline is 5pm of 1 week prior to participation date.
*Application will be closed once we reach the quota, 20 volunteers per day.

<For first time volunteers>
First time volunteers at JEN must attend the orientation.

◆Every Tuesday
Meeting point: Outside of JEN Ishinomaki Office*
Meeting time: 5pm, every Tuesday
★Orientation will be held after assembling. Volunteers will be sent to the accommodation after the orientation. (leaving 6pm)
*Address: SASADENBILL 201, 3-13 Isenba, Ishionmaki City (5 minutes walk from JR Ishionmaki Station)

◆Every Saturday
Meeting point: Same as Tuesdays (Please refer to above)
Meeting time: 9am, every Saturday
★Orientation will be held after assembling. Volunteers will be sent to the work place.

<Accommodation>
JEN Watanoha Accommodation
Address: 48-2 Watanoha aza Yamazaki, Ishionmaki City
*Accommodation is 500yen per night per person.

<Work details>
◆Debris and sludge removal at house (cleaning up debris, sludge, mud, trash, furniture submerged in water brought by the tsunami)
◆Distribution of relief supplies to temporary housings
◆Supporting fishery reconstruction activities
◆Cleaning up streams, shrines, and parks
And, any other work necessary.
Work may change due to supporting needs. Thank you for your understanding.

<Additional Information>
◆Schedule and meeting point may change due to local situation. Please check our website before departure for any changes.
◆JEN will contact volunteers by email or phone to confirm application of volunteers.
◆Application will be closed once we have 20 volunteers. If the application does not reach the quota, the application sill be open for volunteering. Please contact JEN individually.
◆There is a possibility that work will be cancelled in case of rain.
◆As the office is small, there is no space for the volunteers to stay and wait. Please assemble approximately 5 minutes before the meeting time.

<Volunteering insurance>
It is mandatory to join the Volunteering Insurance (Natural disaster plan which covers in case of earthquakes). Please apply for your own Volunteering Insurance at your nearest Japan National Council of Social Welfare. Once applied, it is valid until end of March 2012.

<How to apply for JEN Volunteer>
Please fill in the application form and send via E-mail or FAX.

E-mail  volunteer@jen-npo.org / Fax  03-5225-9357
Application form→ 「application_eng.doc」をダウンロード 
Volunteering guide→ 「manual_eng.pdf」をダウンロード

<For more information on Tohoku volunteering>
E-mail: volunteer@jen-npo.org 
Phone: 080-3303-3249 or 080-3303-6727 (only from 9am to 6pm on weekdays)

October 6, 2011 |

Habib-ur-Rehman, Supporter of IDPs

Mr. Habib-ur-Rheman lives in Dera Ismail Khan. He runs a farm and does fertilizer business. I would like to write about him. He is a strong supporter for IDPs, internal displaced persons and humanitarian support groups.

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Habib is called Mohammad, the Islamic warrior. He is 46 years old while the average longevity in Afghanistan is 42*, and is very active. He is also a passionate social activist. He is known as Haji Sahib. Haji Sahib is a title given to those who go on a pilgrimage and should be respected.

He has lived in Sararogha in South Waziristan Kalusha and Mian Wada in Dera Ismail Khan province for the past 11 years. He used to be a “seasonal internal displaced person” which I have written on the blog. He lived in Dera Ismal Khan in severe cold winter and in South Waziristan, where it has better climate, in summer.

In summer 2009, when Pakistan government conducted mop-up operation against anti-government group, he was back in South Waziristan with his family. However, since the security there worsened about a month ago, he and his family evacuated to Dera Ismal Khan. Masud tribe, living in the same area, escaped without anything.

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Habib says, “Among many issues of IDPs, I think especially big issue is the lack of accommodation and medical facilities.”

He also says, “I offer my own two houses (in Dera Ismal Khan) for the refugees from South Waziristan, but I feel uneasy and sad when I think about people who live in a house made of dried leaves of dates under unaccustomed heat wave.



He is supporting JEN’s activities while he is busy with other activities, so that misunderstandings to international non-governmental organizations that IDPs have can be erased. He just gives helping hands to those who need them the most in order to reconstruct the living.

One activity is that he opened a small temporary shop that sells coca tea at Paharpur market for some IDP. Poor people or people at a loss what to do for recovery can get a clue for reconstruction from one Habib’s action.

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He received many letters of appreciation from some humanitarian groups for his contribution as well as he supported for JEN to confirm IDPs living far from the community. His efforts contributed to save many IDPs.

*Reference: WHO’s report 2010

October 6, 2011 in Pakistan |

Changes in society, a view from the new law

A coordination meeting was held at Amman in early October. NGOs and international organizations which have conducted support activities in Iraq. JEN also joined the meeting.

Topic of the conference is about the laws relating to NGO which has been recently revised.  In Iraq, the follow-up is required every time because the NGO law has been changed every few years.

A person from the Iraqi government who is in charge of NGO also explained the new law this time. The meeting is in English, however, sometimes in Arabic when the debate gets heated.

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What the person from Iraqi government emphasized was that “civil society” like NGO is new for Iraq, hence we must proceed little by little.

Recovering security in Iraq, in the meeting, we could feel the attitude which aims at building relationship properly between the Iraqi government and NGO.

October 6, 2011 in Iraq |

The additional building construction works began at schools in Parwan Province

One of the areas JEN deploys support projects, Salang District in Parwan Province, has many mountain areas. Lots of snow accumulates in mountain areas in winter and rivers in valleys swell in rainy season.
Schools located in mountain areas live with risk caused by natural disasters such as snowslide and landslides. Some of the schools that JEN provides health education and develops school facilities are located in the environment like this.

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Darul Hifaz School today - water and sanitation plants and school facilities have been developed.
In areas like this, retaining walls are needed to protect schools and villages from snowslide and landslide damages.
Therefore, JEN had talked with the village people, and had carried out necessary adjustments with education authority and agricultural restoration development authority. In the result, it was decided to conduct additional construction works at 6 schools’ facilities.
Addition to classrooms, setting up of external walls, restoration of school roofs, and construction of retaining walls are included in the additional construction works.
Among these works, we will share with you the status of retaining walls construction at Darul Hifaz School andEngineer Mohammad Gull-i-Shahid middle school in mountain areas.

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Darul Hifaz School
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In winter, mountains surrounding this area have a heavy snow accumulation. The construction of retaining walls began to protect the area from snowslide.

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Engineer Mohammad Gull-i-Shahid middle school
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We will proceed the construction work to protect schools and villages from snowslide and landslide damages, and to provide children a safe environment for study.

October 6, 2011 in Afghanistan |

10/05/2011

【Volunteer dispatch】 At a private house in Hamagurihama district

Period from 9/22/2011 to 9/29/2011
Cumulative participants 2919

On September 30, we engaged in removing sludge from a local private house in Hamagurihama district, which is a small village with less than twenty families. The house was hit not only by March 11 earthquake and tsunami but also a flash flood came down through the mountain stream behind it during the typhoon No.15 last month.

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In this way, it was inflicted twice by deadly scourges. It all started by removing sludge with shovels. Some of the volunteers were so good at carpentry job that they nailed up boards that formed the foundations of its floors with a few carpenter tools on hand, using timbers prepared by its owner.

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October 5, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/04/2011

【Livelihood】 Support each other for home town, Kitakami

~Oct.4 Social contribution through removing rubbles~

JEN is lending a truck to an owner of a transportation company in Ishinomaki. So that the owner of the company may be able to make his living. On that day, we went to Kitakami along with him where he was at work using the truck. Kitakami in Ishinomaki city is one of the regions where helping hand has not been reached out for long time after the earthquake and tsunami.

JEN has been supporting people there grapple with wide variety of works toward recovery since July. First, JEN dispatched volunteers. Many volunteers helped oyster and scallop farming. Almost all of them are from other prefectures.

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On that day, the owner joined us in working on a social contribution activity using the truck. That took place at Tsuriishi shrine atop stone steps in Jusanhama district, Kitakami town near 'Nilkkori Sun Park'. The devastating tsunami hit the stone steps and washed out its lower part, but today we piled up gravel and restored it. Our program for livelihood is taking place in corporation with supporters and Japan Plat Form.

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October 4, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/03/2011

【Temporary Shelter】 A tea party to meet each other

P1030907  On October1, a tea party took place at a meeting place in a temporary shelter complex.

This time, intended participants were people living in the third and the fourth section in this complex. Although it was the first tea party, a good many people of all ages gathered.

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There aren't supermarkets or retail stores nearby and so local people shop at a far-off city or a moving stall coming down twice a week.

At first, a few of the people were wondering whether or not to participate in the tea party. However, once they sit around the same table, they naturally began to talk each other even they were complete strangers and many of them were seen to have pleasant chat. Quite naturally, they were seen to introduce each other, exchange contact information and give information for daily life.

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Amid everyone was having a happy time, the time to close the party came. Then local people helped JEN volunteer staffs tidy up.

Being blessed with fine weather, we were able to have the first cheerful tea party. We will have the tea party here in the period ahead. The tea parties have taken place at eight places recently and we will continue to hold them at appropriate occasion and place based on the needs.

October 3, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |

10/01/2011

【Livelihood】Help each other seeking to recover the community

~Social contribution through a levee restoration work~

This is the report on a social contribution activity by a business owner who is the one the most deadly inflicted victims and currently receiving JEN's support.

The business owner had been thinking of what to start with day after day, since the tsunami swept away all of his assets including his office building and vehicles.

In June when he was almost resolved to restart his business, JEN dispatched a warm many volunteers there. Being inspired by those volunteers, he found out his starting line to restart.

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JEN lent a dump truck of four ton burden so that he may be able to earn his living. This gaves him a leg up to restart his previous business. Although he himself has been deadly inflicted, he began to revet levees breached by the tsunami as social activity at his client's premises, a coastal shipbuilding corporation.

You can see an ongoing recovery that local people are overcoming the disaster by helping each other.

JEN, as a catalyst, will continue to provide each of the local people with assistance needed by them. Our program for recovering people's life is taking place in corporation with supporters and Japan Plat Form.

October 1, 2011 in Tohoku Earthquake |