Category Archives: Charity

Show at Koriyama with La Caravane

Loony & Smiley the Clowns performing magic for children in Koriyama

This month we were invited to go along with La Caravane (a group of French and Japanese chefs who have been providing delicious hot meals to the people of Tohoku) to share some Christmas cheer with the children of Koriyama, Fukushima.
We were able to perform at the Koriyama Kindergarten and Elementary School where a total of 666 children were able to enjoy La Caravane’s delicious hot meals and our Magic show and balloons.
Here are some of the photos that we took from our trip.
It was a great experience working with La Caravane and being able to bring smiles to the children of Koriyama.

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Visit to Minamisouma Kindergarten

On October 24th we made our first trip to Minamisouma, located just outside the 30 km radius around the crippled nuclear power plant. We had received an email several weeks back from our friend at Rossignol who mentioned that they had 7 large boxes of children and women’s clothing to donate, and just a few days after that Mercidado NPO also asked us to help with their project in MInamisouma. We were very happy to have another opportunity to continue helping the people of Tohoku.   Here are a few photos from our trip.

One of the cute kids who helped us do some magic

Two representatives receiving pre-made balloons so that all the kids could take one home

Group photo with Yotsuba kindergarten kids and Mercidado

Christophe & Yasu delivering 7 boxes of clothing from DPAM toddler clothes and Rossignol Ski wear

We were scheduled to put on our show at Yotsuba kindergarten in Minamisouma for 60 children at 13:00, so we left early in the morning and made good time on the highway. Aside from running into a few road blocks due to high radiation readings near Minamisouma, we made it there safely. We were happy to find that the readings on our geiger counter at the kindergarten itself was relatively low and that the children all seemed to be in good health.

We’re thankful for the many kind and generous individuals who have made our relief and encouragement efforts possible. A special thanks to Jean Barthelemy at Rossignol, Pietro at Mercidado NPO and Christophe Bosquillon who helped to coordinate gathering needed items and supplies.

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Project Ray of Hope reaches Higashimatsushima

We set off for Higashimatsushima from Sendai in the morning, but since our shows were not till after the children returned from school we took a short detour to the town just west of Higashimatsushima.

This town was hit hard by the tsunami and as we made our way to the town we drove through areas where the original road had completely washed away. The temporary gravel roads took us through a section of the coastal town that had been completely wiped out.

One of the evacuees who is in charge of supplies at this small evacuation center

It was here that we found a small evacuation center where we were able to deliver t-shirts, children’s clothing, bug repellant and some art supplies. A kind lady who was in charge of distributing supplies at this small center gave us a very specific list of what was needed, including the sizes of children’s clothes needed.

These 3 mothers were happy to receive Uniqlo clothing and art supplies for their daughters. One of the mothers told us that they had lost everything and were very thankful for the quality clothing.

Just down the road we found 3 families living in a small town hall. Though the kids were at school the mothers were happy to receive clothes for their daughters in exactly the sizes that they needed. They told us that they had lost everything in the tsunami and were thankful for the summer clothes, bug repellant and toys for their children.

A mother with her 2 young boys came by at just the right time. We were happy to load her car with diapers and some of the toys she requested for her boys.

While there a young mother with 2 boys, a five year old and a one year old happened to be walking by. We offered some of the diapers and toys we had which  she was very grateful for. After loading the items in her car we made balloons for her boys and also left balloons with the 3 mothers for when their children returned from school.

We were happy to find this small group of evacuees and be able to put directly into their hands some of the things that they need.

In the afternoon we went to Ooshio city resident center and Ono city resident center where we put on our show for the children and grown ups. We delivered the rest of the diapers, summer clothes, bug repellant and toys at these centers.

Yuki Yamashita passing out toys to parents and grandparents, who were grateful for toys and stationary for their children.

These boys had too much energy and wouldn't sit to watch our show, so we ended up making lots of balloons for them and running around with them.

Christophe, Sam & Yuki with some of the children at 小野市民センター

After our show, we let the children choose from toys, stationary sets that they wanted to have while we made them balloons.

We want to thank all those who participated in Project Ray of Hope which made our 4th trip to the Tohoku area possible. The donations, along with the quality toys, clothing and other needed supplies you helped to purchase and gather all contributed to the success of this trip.

Thank you so much!

東松島で:
朝のうちに仙台から東松島に向かいましたが、ショーは子供たちが学校から帰ってきてからだったので、途中で東松島のすぐ東にある町に寄ることにしました。
運転していると、町は津波から大きな被害を受け、もとの道路が完全に流されてしまっている場所もありました。仮設の道路を通って、海沿いの完全に壊滅された町のある一角に着きました。
そこには小さな避難所があり、Tシャツ、子供用の服、虫除けと文房具を届けることができました。そこで物資の配給を担当している親切な方は子供たちの洋服のサイズも含め、必要な物の詳しいリストを教えてくれました。
さらに先に進んだところには、家が流されてしまった三世帯の家族の方々が住んでいる小さな公民館がありました。子供たちは学校に行っていませんでしたが、お母さんたちに洋服を渡すことができました。娘さんにちょうど合うサイズだと、とても喜んでくれました。津波ですべてを失ってしまったので、夏服や虫除け、子供たちのおもちゃもとても喜んでもらえました。
また、五歳と一歳の男の子を連れてそこを通りかかった若いお母さんに、おむつとおもちゃを渡すことができました。男の子たちのためにバルーンを作り、学校にいる子供たちのためにもバルーンを作って三人のお母さんたちに渡すことができました。

午後は大塩市民センターと小野市民センターでショーをし、残りの物資を届けることができました。
今回、「希望の光」プロジェクトに参加して下さった方々、ご寄付や、おもちゃ、洋服などの物資をもって、東北への訪問を可能にしてくださった皆様に心から感謝しています。

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Revisiting Koriyama Big Pallet – Our 4th Tohoku Trip

We were invited to perform at an event being organized by One Life Japan at Koriyama Big Pallet. About 100 volunteers participated in the event with many making pizzas using an authentic pizza oven brought in for the occasion. Some 30 hairdressers, and 30 members from the Japan Massage Association also helped to cheer up the 1,300 evacuees still staying at the Big Pallet center.

The place looked a bit better than it had one month ago, and a large field that had been used for a parking lot now has lines of new temporary housing units. Things seem to be looking better for the people here, but they still need a whole lot of encouragement.

It was great to participate in a larger event with so many other people giving in what way they can, wether it be preparing pizzas, giving a foot rub, or giving a hair cut.

We’ll spend the night at a friends house in Sendai, and tomorrow we’re off to Higashimatsushima to deliver t-shirts, toys, art supplies and bug repellant. We’ve got 2 shows lined up for the afternoon, but we’ll also be looking for needy people along the way who might need some of the supplies we have loaded in our van.

東北への四度目の訪問

ワンライフジャパンによって企画されたビッグパレットでのイベントでのパフォーマンスを依頼され、行ってきました。このイベントには約100人のボランティアが参加し、本物のかまどを使ってピザを作っていました。ヘアドレッサー30人、日本マッサージ協会のメンバー30人もビッグパレットで避難されている1300人の方々を元気づけようと参加していました。
ビッグパレットでの被災者の方達のための環境は、一ヶ月前より少し改善されたように見えました。まだたくさんの支援が必要な状態ですが、駐車場として利用されていた広い野原には新しい仮設住宅が並んでいました。
ピザをつくったり、マッサージしたり、ヘアカットをしたりなど、自分にできることをしている大勢の方々とこのイベントに参加できてとてもよかったです。
夜は仙台の友人の家に泊めてもらい、翌日は東松島でTシャツ、おもちゃ、文房具と虫除けを届けに行きました。午後には二つのショーが、予約されてました。

 

 

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Delivering Supplies and Giving Encouragement to Rikuzentakata Tsunami Survivors

Yuki greeting evacuees at a center for people with special needs

It was a fantastic way to wrap up our 3 day trip to the Tohoku region. Our day started at 5:00 AM when we left Sendai to deliver clothes and also see where we might encourage people with our show in Rikuzentakata.

To put it simply, it was a full day. We first put on our show at a center for special needs people turned which was doubling as an evacuation center.

陸前高田市の津波の生存者に物資を届けました

東北地方への三日間の旅を締めくくるには最高の一日でした。まずは午前5時に仙台を出発し、物資を届けたり、ショーをするために陸前高田市に向かいました。

簡単に言えば、とても充実した一日でした。まずは避難所を兼ねた障害者の施設でショーをしました。

それからロシニョールの高品質衣類5箱を別の施設に届け、ジーンとフローレンスの歌は皆を感動させました。3つ目の避難所でショーをした後、東京に向かいました。

Sam & Christophe delivering clothes donated by Rossignol to Sun Village Evacuation Center

We delivered 5 large boxes of quality clothing donated by Rossignol at another center (Sun Village Takada) where Gene and Florence sang their moving songs. And we put on our show at a third evacuation center before making our way back to the Tokyo area.

Where we stopped for lunch. Near the top left is the house where Yuki spotted the kids

However the highlight of the day for us was unexpected and unplanned. We were eating lunch looking out over fields of debris still soaked with sea water, when Yuki spotted children near a house on the other side of the fields. Since we still had some toys and clothing, we decided to see if what we had to offer could be use to them.

We made our way to the place we had seen the children, and found 2 families eating lunch in front of their broken houses. We explained that we were putting on our show for children, and that we also had clothes and toys, they excitedly asked us to do our show for them. This came as a surprise as we were only expecting to leave some items with them and then be on our way, but we ended up doing a few bits of comedy magic and also were able to leave them with some shirts for the dads, jackets for the mothers, socks and underwear for the kids, and toys as well.

でも、一日で、一番すばらしいことが起きたのは、海水に浸ったガレキの一帯を見渡しながらお昼を食べていた時です。優喜がその隅に残って建っていた家の近くに子供たちがいるのを見かけました。まだおもちゃと衣類が少しあったので、役に立てるかもしれないと思いました。

子供たちを見かけた場所に行くと、二つの家族が崩れた家の前でお昼を食べていました。子供たちのためにショーをしていたこと、そして洋服とおもちゃがまだあることを説明すると、彼らはうれしそうにショーが見たいと言いました。物だけを置いてすぐに帰ることになるだろうと思っていたので、少し驚きでしたが、結局コメディマジックをし、父親たちのためにはシャツ、母親たちのためには上着、子供たちのために靴下や下着、そしておもちゃも渡すことができました。

They were very thankful for the unexpected visit and we were also very glad that we were able to deliver some of the supplies and toys we had to those who needed it. This reminded us that while we do need to have an overall plan for our shows and deliveries, we also need to keep our eyes open for opportunities and visits that were not in our original itinerary.

彼らはこの突然の訪問をとても感謝しているようでした。わたしたちも、必要としている方々に物資やおもちゃを渡すことができてうれしく思っています。ショーをしたり物資を届けたりするためには大体の計画は必要です。しかし計画にはなくても、このような突然の機会があるか注意していなくてはならないということをこの出来事は思い出させてくれました。

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Performing and delivering toys and art supplies to 140 kids in Fukushima

20110427-081346.jpgOn April 26th we first put on our show for 90 children ages 3 to 4 at a kindergarten in Aizuwakamatsu. We started out with a comedy skit then went through our magic routine which had the kids laughing from start to finish. This was definitely the largest number of kids we did our show for in the Tohoku area, and very possibly the most energetic as well.

We needed all the help we could get from Gene, Florence and Aaron to finish making balloons before we rushed off to the second kindergarten to perform for another 50 kids (all 5 year olds). At both kindergartens we were able to pass out presents to each child and also art supplies, children’s story books, play dough and other toys which were donated by an international school in Tokyo.

These children and their families were all evacuated from the 20 kilometer radius around the troubled nuclear power plant. They have been able to move from evacuation shelters to hotels and ryokan which is great news. These kindergartens were going to close due to the slowly decreasing number of children in the area, but they are now packed with all the cute kids you see in these photos.

We went into the day ready to give to these children, but I think we were the ones who received more through their smiles, laughter and appreciation. At first some of the children looked sad, some were crying not wanting to be away from their parents but when it came for us to say our “good-byes” they were a lively smiling bunch.

We want to thank all those who helped to make this project possible through donations, gathering supplies to deliver and through your encouragement.

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福島で140人の子供たちのためにショーをし、おもちゃや文房具を届けました

4月26日に会津若松の幼稚園の3歳から4歳の子供たち90人の前でショーをしました。まず初めにコメディスキット、それからマジックショーをしたところ、子供たちは最初から最後までずっと笑っていました。これほど大勢の子供たちのためにショーをしたのは東北地方で初めてでした。ひょっとしたら一番エネルギッシュな子供たちでもあったかも。

みんなのためにバルーンを作るのをジーン、フローレンスとアーロンが助けてくれました。それから5歳の子供たちが50人いる次の幼稚園へと急ぎました。両方の幼稚園で子供たちみんなにプレゼントと文房具、子供の絵本、粘土、そして東京のインターナショナルスクールから寄付されたおもちゃを配ることができました。

この子供たちとそのご家族はみんな原発の20キロ半径から避難してきていました。今は、避難所からホテルや旅館に移ることができたそうです。これらの幼稚園は地域の子供たちの減少によって廃園する予定だったそうですが、今は写真でご覧になれるように、かわいい子供たちでいっぱいです。

一日を始めた時は子供たちに与える側にいましたが、後では、子供たちの笑顔や笑い、感謝の声によって、私達のほうが与えられる側になったと思います。初めは、悲しそうな顔をしたり、親から離れたくないといって泣いていた子供たちもいましたが、お別れを言うころにはみんな明るくニコニコしていました。


寄付を下さったり、物資を集めたり、励ましを送ってくださった方々に心から感謝しています。

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Project Ray of Hope – Our Third Trip to Tohoku

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On the evening of the 24th we’ll be heading up to the Tohoku region for another 3 days of shows, delivering supplies and

Picking up art supplies, books, toys and other items for delivery

giving encouragement. For this trip we have received funding from kind individuals at an international school in Tokyo. They wish to remain anonymous but they have given generously which will allow us to make a 3 day trip to Fukushima, Miyagi and hopefully Iwate as well.

Those involved in project Ray of Hope, have bought art supplies, toys, recorders, books, socks and underwear for us to deliver along with our shows. We also received another 5 boxes of clothing from Rossignol which we’ll also be delivering.

We want to thank all those who are helping with Ray of Hope, as well as those who have donated other needed supplies and funds to make these trips possible. Each person we work with has mentioned how they wish they could go themselves. In a way we are just representatives, and we feel privileged to represent such caring individuals. These trips have been made possible through your donations. Thank you!

プロジェクト「希望の光」ー東北への3度目の訪問
24日の夕方、東北地方に物資を届け、励まし、ショーをする三日間の旅に出 ます。今回は東京の国際スクールの個人の方々から資金を頂きました。匿名にしてほしいとのことでしたが、彼らは寛大に寄付して下さり、お かげで福島と宮城、そしてできれば岩手まで行けます。
「希望の光」プロジェクトに参加している方々から文具、おもちゃ、リコー ダー、本、靴下と下着を、ショーをする際に届けるためにいただきました。ロシニョールからはもう五箱の衣類もいただきました。
「希望の光」を援助して下さっている皆さん、そしてこれらの訪問のために物 資や資金を寄付して下さった皆さんにお礼申し上げます。一人一人が自分たちが行けたらと言っていました。ある意味では、わたしたちはただ の代表で、こんなに親切な個人を代表できることを光栄に思っています。これらの訪問は皆さんのご支援 によって支えられています。本当にありがとうございます!

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