Volunteer work at Miyagino ward Volunteer Center

Volunteer work at Miyagino ward Volunteer Center
At present in Sendai, the Social Welfare Council bridges government and residents, through 4 Disaster Volunteer Centers. We went today29thto the volunteer center in Miyagino Ward, and the 7 of us did the following work.

  • Helping those move out of Sendai There are elderly people living alone who have had to move away from Sendai. We helped them sort their belongings, and dispose of things. A great amount of electrical items, furniture, and rubble are piled up as “earthquake garbage”.

  • Cleaning houses We helped clean the home of a disabled woman who lives alone. Many people said they want someone to talk with, and I sensed that it is not only the work we are asked to do, but also communication that is important.
  • Providing information on emergency loans

Need for mid to long term support
The people we visited are not those who are left without any means of life, but many of them are in a vulnerable position in society, and the disaster has accentuated their difficulties. With the prolonged effects of the disaster, the type of support we gave today will become greater.
Yuusuke Yoshioka and Kimiko Akita
SCF Volunteer


UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center


(Earthquake garbage dumpThe scene at Hinodecho Park

Volunteer work at Shichigahama with Sendai YMCA

Today again, we worked in Shichigahama with the Sendai YMCA and folks from Lutheran Gakuin University. Going for the first time to Shichigahama, I was left speechless by what I saw of the disaster.
We first went around to each house, hearing what they needed and then distributed supplies. In some areas that were less damaged, and people were prepared, they had enough supplies, but some places needed supplies and water.
Shichigahama’s Disaster Support Center has a lot of supplies, and so I felt some frustration, and wished that they could be distributed as soon as possible. In hearing directly from the residents, I was made to think about what considerations are necessary and how we can be of help. Also there are requests from other areas as well, so I hope we can coordinate with other organizations to meet those needs as well.
Miho Saito:(Volunteer)


(The situation in Shichigahama)
$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(The large quantities of relief supplies at Shihigahama Volunter Center)
$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(Carefully looking up residences on a map)

Ishinomaki Eiko Kindergarten started up again!

At Ishinomaki Eiko Kindergarten which was hit hard by the tsunami, water was restored yesterday (28th) and the kindergarten resumed today (29th).
$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
Parents will have to drop off and pick up their children for a while.
As the playground is full of mud from the tsunami, most activities will be indoors.
Many houses in Ishinomaki do not have electricity or water, and many houses were taken away by the tsunami. There are many families who have lost their homes and are in deep sorrow. Plans for graduation and entrance ceremony are still unclear. The kindergarten principle Pastor Minoru Kobuna, after consulting with his teachers, decided to start the kindergarten even in the midst of difficulties for the sake of the children and parents. Only half of the children were able to come back on the first day, but we were able to see the smiling faces of the children after 18 days.
We at the Tohoku Disaster Relief Center started digging the mud out of Ishinomaki Kindergarten playground. We do not know how long it will take for the kindergarten to return to its original shape, but we are determined to continue to work toward that end.
We ask for your prayers and support.
Takafumi Sato(SCF Volunteer)

We began volunteer work in Ishinomaki area.

Starting today (29th) our accommodation of out of town volunteers is in full swing and we began volunteer work in Ishinomaki area.
Today most of our work involved removing mud from the playground of the Eiko Kindergarten at Ishonomaki Eiko Church.
The tsunami hit even this area 3 kilometers from the coast (over 2 kilometers from the bay). Due to area flooding, 1600 people were isolated in the emergency shelter at Ishinomaki Koubunkan High School (next to the Eiko Church). When the water level receded the church/kindergarten playground was still flooded. However, the building was safe, so they opened up the facility as a shelter and also started to accept relief supplies from other churches.
On the 28th, water service was restored and kindergarten started up again today. However, the playground is still full of mud and beat up. The volunteer work to restore the playground began today. There being a paper pulp factory in Ishinomaki, we worked to remove the pulp and fill into sandbags along with the mud mixed with sewage and sea water. In no time over 40 sandbags were filled.


$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(mud with pulp)
The playground is still bumpy but the area around the slide is cleaned up so the children were enjoying playing on it. One child came up to me and said “I am glad we can play on the slide now, but I don’t like the jungle gym cause it’s still muddy!”
“Sorry, we’ll make sure it is cleaned up so you can play on it tomorrow” I answered, and the child went back to the slide smiling. I want to work hard again tomorrow so the children can play safely in their playground.

$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(the mud filled and bumpy playground)
$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(mud even on the benches)
Removing mud is a mountainous task in the areas near the church. We plan to continue to concentrate our volunteer work on mud removal in areas surrounding Ishinomaki Eiko Church and Kindergarten, Ishinomaki Yamashirocho Church as well as at church members homes.
We need more hands. It is filthy and hard work, but we invite you to volunteer!
Takafumi Sato (SCF Volunteer)

$UCCJ Tohoku Disaster Relief Center
(The sign reading SOS 1600 still remains at the Ishinomaki Koubunkan high school)

石巻栄光幼稚園が再開されました!(3月29日)

津波で大きな被害を受けた石巻栄光幼稚園に昨日水が通り、今日(3月29日)幼稚園が再開されました!
$「東北教区被災者支援センター」の公式ブログ
しばらくは保護者が園児を送り迎えする通いの形となります。園庭に津波の泥が残っているため、室内での活動が中心です。
石巻では、まだ電気も水もガスも通っていない家もあり、津波で流されてしまった家屋もたくさんあります。家族を失い、悲しみの中にある人も少なくありません。卒園式と入園式の日にちも未定です。困難な状況の中でも、子どもたちと、保護者たちのために、園長先生の小鮒實牧師は教職員と相談し、再開を決断されました。
再開初日の今日、幼稚園に集まることができた園児は半数ほどでしたが、子どもたちの笑顔を18日ぶりに見ることができました。
私たち東北教区被災者支援センターでは、石巻栄光幼稚園の園庭のドロを出すボランティアを始めました。幼稚園が元の形に戻るのに何日かかるのか、わかりませんが、今後も継続して活動する決意です。お祈りとご支援をよろしくお願いいたします。

佐藤飛文(さとう・たかふみ/SCF派遣ボランティア)

七ヶ浜町でのボランティア活動報告(3月29日)

仙台YMCAと一緒に七ヶ浜町でボランティア活動をしてきました。
私たちは昨日に引き続き、七ヶ浜に仙台YMCAの方々、ルーテル学院大学の方々と共に活動してきました。初めていった七ヶ浜町の被災状況に、正直言葉を失いました。
到着してさっそく、各家を一軒ずつ回り、必要な物資の聞き取り調査、その後に配給という活動内容でした。区域によっては被害があまりなく準備もなされていたということで物資が足りていたところもあれば、消耗品の物資の要請や、やはり水がほしいという要望がありました。
七ヶ浜町の災害支援センターには多くの物資があったので、公平性の面も考えつつその中でも少しでも早く住民の方々にお届けすることができないのかともどかしく思ったりもしました。実際に被災された住民の方々の声をお聞きしていくうちに、考慮しなければならない点や、何が自分たちにはできるのかという部分も多く考えさせられ、また今回担当した区域以外からも活動の要請がきているのでそちらの他団体の方々と連携を取りつつ今後もこの活動を展開させていきたいです。

ボランティア 齋藤未歩(さいとう・みほ)


七ヶ浜町の被災状況
$「東北教区被災者支援センター」の公式ブログ
七ヶ浜町ボランティア・センター内の大量の支援物資
$「東北教区被災者支援センター」の公式ブログ
地図一枚で丹念に各家庭を調べてまわります

宮城野区でのボランティア活動報告(3月29日)

宮城野区災害ボランティア・センターでの活動
現在仙台市では、行政と住民の橋渡しを担う社会福祉協議会によって、4つの「災害ボランティアセンター」が開設されています。私たちは本日(29日)、宮城野区の同センターを通して、7名で以下の活動を担当しました。

  • 転出者の引越し手伝い: 地震により仙台を離れることになった、一人暮らしの高齢者の方の荷物を整理し、処分するものは指定された公園に廃棄する手伝いをしました。大量の家電製品、家具、がれきなどの震災ゴミが山のように積まれていました。
    $「東北教区被災者支援センター」の公式ブログ
    震災ゴミの集積所・日の出町公園の様子
  • 被災者の家屋の清掃: 足が不自由なために身動きがとれない一人暮らしの女性を訪問し、清掃を手伝いました。「誰かと話しをしたい」という被災者の方々も多く、依頼された作業だけでなく、コミュニケーションが大切だと感じました。
  • 緊急小口融資の案内補助

中長期的な支援の必要性
今回支援した方々は、まったく生活できないという被災状況ではなかったものの、社会的に弱い人々の生活が、災害によってさらに困難になっている様子が分かりました。被災生活の長期化するにつれ、今回のような支援への必要性は、今後高まっていくのではないかと思います。

SCF派遣ボランティア 吉岡優介(よしおか・ゆうすけ)
秋田公子(あきた・きみこ)