寄付・募金・ボランティアのセーブ・ザ・チルドレン・ジャパン

Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami Emergency response and recovery program

“Through Fishery I Want to Return My Debt of Gratitude to Many People” Award Ceremony for the Suntory-SCJ Scholarship for the Recovery of the Fisheries Industry (June 26, 2013)

With the cooperation of Suntory Holdings, the Suntory-SCJ Scholarship for the Recovery of the Fisheries Industry has entered its second year. The fishery high schools in Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures suffered massive damage from the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011. Through these scholarships, in which no return payment is required, we support high school students who are the bearers of the local fishery industry to spend their high school life comfortably. The scholarships for 2013 were awarded at ceremonies held at target schools in Iwate and Miyagi prefectures.

■ Iwate Prefecture Takata High School (June 5, 2013)

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(Photo)
At Iwate Prefecture Takata High School

The greeting from the student representative of Takata High School is given below (original text).

Thank you very much for providing us with these scholarships.
During the Great East Japan Earthquake two years ago, the tsunami took many precious things from us. The school buildings at Takata High School were completely destroyed, and many lost their lives. The former Hirota Fishery High School where we used to have practical training was completely destroyed, and all our training equipment swept away. This was a huge loss for us. Where I live, nearly all of the 300 fishing boats were lost. Only nine that were out at sea survived. Our aquaculture facilities for scallops and seaweed were destroyed and our machinery lost. My family has worked in the fishing industry for generations. We lost our two ships and aquaculture facilities that placed us in a desperate situation. We had no income and had lost our dreams and hopes for the future. I did not have transportation to get to school, so I was unsure if I could keep going to school . I had to start my high school life in this state of anxiety. As my family had no income, I wondered if I should quit school and go to work to help my family earn money. However, my parents told me, “Don’t worry about us. Go to school and do everything you like.” Their words certainly made me feel happy, but at the same time I felt a great sorrow for them. It was under these circumstances that I received a Suntory-SCJ Scholarship for the Recovery of the Fisheries Industry. This made me feel relieved, as it would reduce the burden upon my parents. I will use this scholarship to travel to school and to purchase the textbooks required to gain my qualifications. Moreover, thanks to this scholarship I am able to continue practicing baseball that I love so much.
Since I was very young I have loved the sea near my community. I always wanted to continue my family’s fishing business. The earthquake only strengthened my conviction to succeed in the fishing industry. I want to work hard for the reconstruction of our fishing industry and for our living from the sea. Someday I want to return my debt of appreciation to many people through fishing. To conclude my speech as a representative of the students, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation for your great support. Thank you very much.

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[Kento Noda, student representative of the 3rd grade Ocean Systems Course]
Thank you very much for your heartfelt speech.

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(From the right) Mr. Yokota (school principal), Mr. Noda, Ms. Orii (Suntory corporate officer) and Mr. Shibuya (SCJ CEO)

Mr. Yokota, the school principal of Iwate Prefecture Takata High School, gave the following greeting. (Summary)

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[Mr. Akihiko Yokota, principal of Iwate Prefecture Takata High School]

It has been over two years since the Great East Japan Earthquake, and much support and effort has been devoted to the local reconstruction process. However, I feel we still find it difficult to see the real outcomes of this support. Employment opportunities remain a huge issue in our community, and we are still facing a severe economic situation. And today we have another concern – that people are starting to forget about the earthquake. In these circumstances, the continuous support from your corporation, and your organization, come as a warm message saying, “We haven’t forgotten about you. We are always watching out for you.” Your support not only touches the hearts of our students, but also plunges deeply into all our hearts, encouraging and energizing us to face our challenges again.

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■ Miyagi Prefecture Fishery High School (June 17, 2013)

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(Photo)
At Miyagi Prefecture Fishery High School

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[Ms. Masako Orii, Corporate Officer, Suntory Holdings]

I sincerely wish that you go forward step by step, spending a fruitful high school life, and bearing the future of Tohoku as well as its fishery industry. I want each of you to believe in your own potential and to fly ahead into the future. (Excerpt from her greeting).

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[Mr. Juntaro Takemoto, Suntory SUNGOLIATH]

A single person may not be able to achieve much, but if people pull together, they can generate a huge force. I want to tell you that if you fulfill your own responsibilities, and if others do the same, it produces a much more powerful force than a single person can ever achieve alone. (Excerpt from his greeting).

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[Mr. Takayuki Sato, student representative from the 3rd grade Information Science Course]
He said, “Keeping a feeling of gratitude in mind, I promise that we will be the ones that contribute to the reconstruction, and in the years ahead, we will energized Ishinomaki to be even better than before the earthquake.”

(From right) Mr. Ono (school principal), Mr. Kadobari, Mr. Sato, Ms. Orii (Suntory), Mr. Takemoto (SUNGOLIATH) and Mr. Senga (SCJ CEO)

After the ceremony, Mr. Juntaro Takemoto, a rugby player with “Suntory SUNGOLIATH,” gave a “Rugby Clinic” and provided a passionate coaching session to students whilst working out with them.

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(Photo)
Students seriously listen to their coaching

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(Photo)
The fighting spirit is demonstrated during tackling practice!

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(Photo) (Photo)
Practicing hard with one team as defense and the other as offence! Mr. Takemoto’s passion is clearly conveyed to all.

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(Photo)
After the “Rugby Clinic” with Mr. Takemoto. What fresh smiles!

[Students’ comments after the “Rugby Clinic”]
・ We are no longer under unfortunate circumstances. The earthquake can no longer be our excuse.
・ I thought I should apply what I learned from Mr. Takemoto to our games and do our best.
・ The third graders are going to retire in a few months. I want to win as many games as possible so as to not to have any regrets.

Seeing how Mr. Takemoto and the students interacted with one another, I felt excited myself. I emphasized with their positive attitudes and willingness towards a brighter future.

Together with Suntory Holdings, SCJ will continue to provide support from of the perspective of children. We wish to contribute not only towards the reconstruction of their fishing industry, but also to provide a bright hope for the students who are studying so hard.

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Suntory-SCJ Scholarship for Recovery of the Fisheries Industry will be provided for three years from April 2012 to March 2013. The scholarships are open to students in fishery high schools from earthquake affected areas, who are the bearers of future fishery. In 2013, the scholarships will be provided to 485 students from seven fishery high schools.

(Reported by Wakako Fujiwara of Tono Office, and Takafumi Hayasaka of Sendai Office).