As a community of students and researchers with strong links to Japan from the University of British Columbia, we would like to volunteer our services to contribute to relief efforts in the regions affected by the triple disaster of March 11.
Through long-standing connections with juku teachers and operators as well as through inclusion of JET-alumni with teaching experience in Japan in our efforts, we are hoping to organize a recreational summer camp for evacuated children during the upcoming summer vacation. Ideally, this would accommodate a significant number of children in a location away from Tohoku to give the children an activity to look forward to during the summer, as well as to offer their parents some time to attend to pressing matters associated with their evacuation.
Planned activities would include teaching and learning activities designed in collaboration between experience juku teachers and JET alumni, as well as structured play activities. We hope to draw on the advice or participation of post-traumatic counselors in designing activities that would be appropriate as well as helpful to participating students.
We are now seeking direct links with municipalities and/or schools in affected regions to discuss the possibility of such a camp. In addition to the volunteering of project participants as teachers, we hope to be able to raise the funds to offer free participation (including transportation and room & board) to students in a three-day camp.
If you have any comments/suggestions/donations for this still-evolving project idea, please contact me directly.