Tag Archives: Japan earthquake relief work

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!




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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.





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.



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.


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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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Project Ray of Hope – Our Third Trip to Tohoku


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!

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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4 Visits to 避難所 in Aizumisato

Last night Robert, Faith, Gene and Florence made their way here from Shizuoka and Chiba, bringing a large van load full of bananas, toys, and other supplies. We are so glad that they chose to join us in our shows today as the elderly and grown ups at the 4 evacuation centers we visited today were so happy to hear them sing traditional Japanese songs.

We had a full day with 2 visits in the morning, a lunch break at a ramen restaurant and then another 2 more visits to evacuation centers in the Aizumisato area here in Fukushima. It was a full day of making balloons, doing comedy magic, talking to kids, signing more autographs and driving around from one place to another. It was a little tiring, but at the same time a whole lot of fun and possibly one of the most fulfilling days I’ve had in years. We heard many people say there were so happy to see the children smiling and having fun after all they’ve been through.

A special thank you, to my mom who did the research and made calls to book these visits for us, and for my family for joining us yesterday and today to talk with people, encourage them and to pass out books for children, along with encouraging messages from around the world translated into Japanese.

We also want to thank Tadaura san and his family for putting us up in their spacious home in Fukushima, and for feeding us delicious food and drink 🙂 Thank you so much!

Tomorrow we may have a few more shows in the area before we head out to deliver supplies Yamamotocho in Miyagi. Thank you for your support and prayers!



ゆうべ、ロバート、フェイス、ジーンとフローレンスたちが、バナナやおもちゃ、その他の物資をバンいっぱいに積んで静岡と千葉からやって来てくれました。彼らは日本の伝統的な歌を歌い、大人たちとお年寄りの方々はとても喜んでくださいました。 一緒に避難所を訪問することができて本当によかったです。





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