Saturday, February 18, 2012

SWTJ Exhibition Kyoto Prefectural Center for Partnerships with NPO

March 1-15, 2012:
SWTJ exposition at the Kyoto Prefectural Center for Partnerships with NPO (non-profit organizations)

SWTJ thanks the Kyoto Prefectural Center for the opportunity to report on SWTJ activities in the disaster area

Place: Kyoto Prefectural Center for Partnerships with NPO, Nihonkan 1F
Time: March 1 to March 15, 8:30am-9:30pm
March 3 (Saturday): SWTJ Activity Report and Charity Sale 10am-3pm

In the exposition, SWTJ reports on its activities in the Tohoku disaster zone since April 2011 through photos and texts. On March 3, SWTJ members will be present and will be happy to answer your questions. There will also be a charity sale of SWTJ-designed goods. The proceeds of the sale will be used for the SWTJ March activity “Requiem in memory of the victims of the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami” in the disaster area.

3月1日(木)~3月15日(木)8:30~21:30 (4日休館日)
3月3日(土)展示説明会・チャリティーグッズ販売 10:00~15:00

Update Tsukidate Community Space!

The SWTJ Tsukidate Community Space construction is advancing fast thanks to the hard work of the SWTJ carpenter team, including several evacuee residents of the nearby Tsukidate temporary housing who have been helping every day!

The space is a much needed place where the residents of this rural village in the hills of Kesennuma and the newcomer evacuee community can freely mingle and network. It will play an important role in integrating evacuees into the existing community. 



There is still much to do! Our carpenters are still at work on-site. 



List of goods still needed
(Please contact us at if you wish to contribute any of the following goods, either in kind or as a monetary donation. Any amount in a monetary donation exceeding the amount listed will be used to fund SWTJ activities in Tohoku)
P.S.  The 6 large windows mentioned below have already been inserted to make the space usable as soon as possible. However, we still need a sponsor for them.

Aluminum-framed windows:
6 large windows (1900×1170mm) 357,000Yen (59,500Yenx6)
3 small windows (1235×1170mm66,000Yen22,000Yen×3
1 aluminum-framed door (650×1846mm) 25,000Yen
2 ventilators (to be fixed on the wall) 17,800Yen 8,900Yen×2
1 gas cooking stove (propane gas) 16,440Yen)
Solar panels to be fixed on roof surface of 28(including cost to set up electrical wiring) 1200,000Yen
1 home movie system 116,000Yen
Speakers: 39,285Yen
(DVD player: 37,900Yen: the DVD player has been donated. Thank you!)
Read more on the project in English here:







アルミサッシ大  (1900×1170mm)×6枚  357,000円
アルミサッシ小     (1235×1170mm)×3枚 66,000円
アルミドア 650X1846 1枚 25,000円相当

壁付け換気扇 2台 17,800円相当(8,900×2)

ガス台(2口、プロパン) 1台  16,440円相当

ソーラーシステム 一式 28㎡屋根部分施行、電気設備工事費 1200,000円相当




設置数:14枚 2.604KW(最大で100wの電球 23~26個程度)

ホームシアター 一式 液晶ビジョン52型 116,000円相当

スピーカーシステム 39,285円相当



Monday, February 13, 2012

SWTJ 11th Tohoku Activity Week February 2012

SWTJ carpenters hard at work!

Tsukidate Post-Disaster Community Space in the hills of Kesennuma

This is the very coldest season of the year! 

Tsukidate community space under construction next to Tsukidate temporary housing

Yes, temperatures are below zero! But the SWTJ carpenter team cannot waste any time. The evacuee community in the neighboring temporary housing is quite isolated, and has currently no space where they can freely gather, and where they can mingle with locals, volunteers, and other visitors. The bus to downtown Kesennuma runs very infrequently. It is cold, and lonely. Some of the evacuees who now have neither a car nor a job tend to stay in their rooms at all time. 

At work: SWTJ Representative Yoshikawa (left) and SWTJ Kesennuma Branch Head Tamura

Adding the windows

Saturday Feb. 11: Windows fixed! 

Charcoal Kiln:
Behind the Tsukidate community site under construction, Mr. Tamura  is currently fixing the roof of a new charcoal kiln, a project of the local Yasse Forest Education School 'Yasse Mori no Gakko.' Charcoal has been produced in Yasse for centuries. Mr. Tamura, who is also the SWTJ local representative in Kesennuma, is a local charcoal maker and expert, an educator on regional natural resources, and an ecotourism leader. The charcoal will be put to good use in the new Tsukidate community space.

Mr. Tamura on the roof of the charcoal kiln

Mr. S. and Mr. Y. from the temporary housing site help the SWTJ construction team. Thanks!   ((February 13th) 

SWTJ's Yasuo Yoshikawa says: "I'm so glad that people from the temporary housing actually come out of their rooms to help us build the space. After work, we often share a meal. Many locals also come by regularly to see how work advances.  Everybody is looking forward to the completion of the space!"

                                                                                                      Text by Beatrix Yoshikawa, SWTJ  

SWTJ still needs funds and donations in kind for the Tsukidate community space. If you are interested in taking part, find more information on what is needed here:

Tomorrow, February 14th, is the start of the SWTJ Valentine Activity Week! Look out for our blogs on Valentine chocolate-making workshops in child centers and temporary housing complexes in the disaster area during the next few days.