This week was really busy but worthy. The main work was the Poka-Poka recreation in Inawashiro, Fukushima from 7.14 to 7.17 and the left work proceeded in the FoE Japan office. For the exploring part, I don’t have time to go to downtown areas and visit places; but I think the short trip in Fukushima is more deserved.
7.11(Tue) read the documents about Japan forest law history and EUTR; office work
7.12(Wed) office work
In the afternoon, I asked some random questions to Yoshida-san about environmental studies. Because I am curious that how could she works for FoE Japan for such long time and worries about environmental issues when many people do not have the sense to really care about our environment. She told me that even though many people do not have the sense to protect the environment but there are people caring about it and trying to find a way to drive other people. Today we had a guest, has worked as an anti-nuclear activist for over thirty years, came to discuss the nuclear problem with the staff member and what talked about was exactly how to make more people involve the power shift campaign and support the energy shifting.
7.13 (Thur) made thanks letters for the supporters; office work
7.14(Fri) day off: went to Inawashiro with a staff member in the evening
7.15 (Sat) followed the schedule and did the activities with kids: we caught the grasshoppers on the field and played the firework.
7.16(Sun) continued following the schedule and did the activities with kids: went to the Inawashiro lake, ate Somen and played with them…
7.17(Mon) continued following the schedule and did the activities with kids; went back to Tokyo in the evening:
Poka-Poka project is a retreat for children and parents in Fukushima prefecture. In this project, the main objective is to create the recreation for the younger generation and a place for parents to communicate the thoughts. And more than 700 children and guardians participated in Poka-Poka in Inawashiro which they can enjoy on weekends in the past four years.
I was glad that I had an opportunity to participant the Poka-Poka Project for once. It definitely drew a perfect stroke to my internship journey at FoE Japan. First of all, I want to give many thanks for Yano-San and volunteers Jiun and Jean helping me a lot on this short trip. I don’t understand much Japanese so Jiun translated for me most of time and Jean also helped. And then thanks for all the participants’ understanding and consideration to me. It helped me a lot to get fit in the environment when I cannot speak Japanese very well. In these three days, I experienced many first-time such as playing with more than twenty kids who does not speak my familiar language, catching the grasshoppers, eating noodles with natto and raw egg, trying Sōmen with bamboo sticks in front of house, happening to see the milky way and the sky full of stars, playing water in the lake, having a thyroid check without paying and so on. All these things may look normal and small, but indeed a unique and memorable experience for me. I had fun even though it was exhausted. Look at those energetic young kids, I spontaneously feel happy that they enjoy this kind of recreation activities monthly. They are not only enthusiastic about exploring joy in nature but also heartwarming to help others. When swinging under the tree, they know how to protect the young brothers and sisters; when having the meals, they know they should refill younger’s bowl; when shorthanded in the kitchen, they help their mothers to prepare the dishes. Obviously, Poka-Poka Project is indeed a good program organized and proceeded by FoE Japan. It provides opportunities for kids to own a happy childhood and also to gather more families together to deal with the negative influence brought by the nuclear accident. However, it is a pity that I cannot speak Japanese or I will communicate more with children and mothers to know them better. Then it becomes my motivation to learn Japanese well and come back soon. After the camp finished, I cannot believe it is my first time experience but also the last time. Thinking about may not be able to meet these adorable people anymore makes me feel extremely upset. But I believe in the future on someday I will have a chance to come back and continue to participant in Poka-Poka Project and meet the grown kids.
I cannot post the faces of kids, so the photos of activities are limited.