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

The 4th Disaster Prevention Global Platform Meeting – Part 1 (May 18, 2013)

Recently we reported on a written proposal created by 32 junior and senior high school students for the “4th Disaster Prevention Global Platform Meeting” in Geneva. The students from Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures had collaborated at a workshop called “What We Want to Convey about Disaster Prevention around the World.” Today, the four representative members chosen by the children at the workshop departed for Switzerland! Let me tell you what the representatives did before their departure.

Written Proposal: “Written Proposal: Voices of the Children of Tohoku”

■ Press announcement in Japan to release the report “We want to convey the thoughts of the children of Tohoku” and express enthusiasm about going to Geneva ■

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Before their departure, the children once again met and held discussions to decide upon the title of their written proposal. They had also been independently preparing themselves so as to be able to exchange opinions with children from other countries. “I have memorized my self-introduction in English.” “I got my English teacher to record the text of my self-introduction.”

May 17, 2013 was the day before the representatives departed to Geneva. First, they participated in a press conference to convey their thoughts and opinions to the people of Japan. Surrounded by eight media companies, including television stations and newspapers, they each announced their enthusiasm for their proposal and what they would like to convey to the world.

“The strength of my feelings toward this written proposal that was made by participants giving their valuable time for the children of Japan, our own towns and also the future of the world is immeasurable. However, I hope to be able to convey these feelings as best I can to as many people as possible during this amazing opportunity.” (Female, 3rd grader from senior high school, Iwate Prefecture)

“What I want to convey with my participation in this event is a desire to value the opinions of children. I want to communicate a wish that people listen carefully to the voices of the children who will be responsible for the future and to think with them about the world of the future.” (Female, 3rd grader from senior high school, Iwate Prefecture)

“I would like to talk with the children who will participate in the Global Platform about how important it is to prepare for disasters and to talk about the necessity of raising children’s awareness of disaster reduction.” (Male, 3rd grader from senior high school, Miyagi Prefecture)

“Currently, I think we are still at the initial phase of ‘getting to know more about the current state’ in Fukushima, so we need to further carry out our activities. As the next step, if we do not make further appeals and ask our listeners to take action, absolutely nothing will change. I am heading to Geneva full of fighting spirit hoping to make a step toward the next stage through our participation in this meeting.” (Female, 2nd grader from senior high school, Fukushima Prefecture)

■ Departure day! Heading off to convey their thoughts and opinions about disaster prevention around the world ■

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The representative members spoke some powerful words. “This is a written proposal packed with strong feelings, so I hope to be able to convey this without leaving anything out as a representative of the 32 people [who participated in the workshop].”

“Instead of just talking, I want to hear about the differences in awareness toward disaster prevention according to region and whether they are prepared for such an event or not by listening carefully to the words of the other participants.”

With a feeling of “it is because we have experienced the Great East Japan Earthquake that we can do it,” the four representative members set out to Geneva where the 4th Disaster Prevention Global Platform Meeting will take place.

We will be reporting on the meeting on the official Facebook page of Save the Children Japan, so please be sure to give us your support!

(Reported by Haruka Nakamura, Tono Office)