Creating a live summer, with smiles, new friends. How reconstruction support helps to bring joy to the children affected by the Great East Earthquake

Japanese Red Cross Society’s chapters (Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima) recently organized several events from late July to early August for 93 children who live in areas affected by the Great East Earthquake of 2011. The event was aimed at cheering up the children through camps and outdoor activities.

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One of the games held in “The naughty boys and girls lively school” – How many times can they jump over the jump-rope?

Miyagi prefecture:93 children in areas affected by the Great East Earthquake had a great time outdoors.

Japanese Red Cross Miyagi chapter organized a game called the Wanpaku Genki School or the “naughty boys and girls lively school”. Designed for elementary school students from fourth to sixth grade, the game was held at the National Hanayama Youth Centre. The 93 children participating in the adventure game were able to experience the outdoors and traverse a mountain trail. Hiroti Sato, a fourth grade student, was excited after the whole experience. “I have never walked on rough roads before,” he said. Sawa Akai, another fourth grade student, enjoyed the experience of listening to the sound of beating wood through a stethoscope.

Iwate prefecture:Children communicating with the members of JRC.

Japanese Red Cross Iwate chapter invited 46 elementary school students ranging from the fifth to sixth grade to the National Iwateyama Youth Communication Centre, for a get-together session during the Junior Red Cross (JRC) Leadership Training camp. Children said that this was their first experience of joining camp where they learned how to “Notice, Think” and “Act” along with the members of JRC.

Fukushima prefecture:Smile camp, connected by a Smile.

Children living around the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant have been studying in temporary schoolhouses. Japanese Red Cross Fukushima chapter held the “Japanese Red Cross Society’s Smile Camp” for students ranging from fourth grade elementary to second grade junior high in Ura-Bandai. 38 participants tried trekking and canoeing. “I can paddle the canoe well, and I made friends!” said one of the children. The participants left the camp with smiles on their faces, reflected on the surface of the lake.

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After learning how to use the canoe, the participants cooperated with other members to row smoothly across the lake.