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

A Review of Our Summer Vacation Programs: Supporting the Growth of Fukushima’s Children (September 2, 2013)

Summer vacation is a special time for children, a time when the ordinary and extraordinary can exquisitely mingle. They may spend a boring afternoon on a hot day, or suddenly encounter new experiences or an exciting moment hidden in the day-to-day. Children will remember these special experiences for the rest of their lives.

 

Recently the Fukushima Prefectural Board of Education announced the results of their surveys on the physical strength and capabilities of Fukushima’s children. Unfortunately, it showed that the trend towards childhood obesity in Fukushima was the worst in Japan. Compared with the results from before the disaster, the physical strength and capabilities of both boys and girls have decreased dramatically. The surveys allow us to hear the cries of Fukushima’s children who are no longer able to actively play outside due to the effects of radiation. I wonder how these children have spent their third summer since the earthquake?

 

The Aizuwakamatsu Office of Save the Children Japan (SCJ) has offered many programs for Fukushima’s children, including nature experience camps, dances and sports lessons where they could vigorously enjoy physical activity. These programs allow children to run around, have new encounters, challenges and make interesting discoveries while engaging in physical activities in a natural environment. For a while the children can forget about the heat and their fatigue.

 

Play and sport contribute not only to children’s physical strength and health, but also enhances their social and psychological development. They provide children with precious opportunities to expend their energy, gain ambition and recognize the joy of developing themselves. The children can also learn patience and develop teamwork skills that are good for their emotional growth. Unfortunately, it is impossible to provide them with the same free playing spaces as they previously enjoyed, but it gives us great pleasure if we can make their third summer since the earthquake better than the previous one.

 

Please read our other blog entries to see how the children spent their summer vacations this year. The children will bring their memories of summer with them when they return to school life.

SCJ puts its best efforts into making children’s daily life an important place for their growth and learning.

Fukushima office

The members of Aizuwakamatsu will keep working together for Fukushima.

We greatly appreciate your continuous support and cooperation.

(Naoko Kanatani, Area Manager of Aizuwakamatsu Office)