We have been able to raise a really significant amount of money with our ‘My Time for Japan’ campaign: our many colleagues around the world have donated a total of €112,855.22, and with the company’s contribution that sum has now doubled to over €225,000.
So how do we select the recipients of our money? Well, it’s not that easy to identify a solidarity project in one of the world’s most industrialised countries like Japan. But we have decided to aim for the children and their hunger for “food for the soul”. For their need to overcome the traumas and difficulties of the post-earthquake.
So what have we done?
With the help of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), who were most helpful as our partners in the ‘My Time for Haiti’ project, we made contact with the Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA), ONP internationally active in various parts of Asia and in particular in the area of Japan devastated by the earthquake.
The SVA proposed that we support a community building project, contributing to financing the so-called “itinerant libraries”, which have already been successfully experimented with in other Asian countries in similar situations. Itinerant libraries are a means by which volunteers create aggregation initiatives devoted first and foremost to children, but the relative families who have experienced the earthquake also benefit as many of them live in temporary houses. We are to devote all of the money raised by the ‘My Time for Japan’ project to buying a vehicle that acts as an itinerant library, as well as thousands of books.
Books and reading initiatives will be taken to 32 stations in the Iwate Prefecture, one of the areas devastated by the earthquake including Yamada Town, Otsuchi Town, Ofunato City and Rikuzentakata City to reach 2,500 children.
Fairy stories, poetry, comics, and that’s not all. Thousands of Japanese children will finally be able to go back to reading the books they prefer and receive the necessary support to smile again, also thanks to ‘My Time for Japan’, a solidarity initiative that distinguishes us for the mobilisation of colleagues and companies together and our direct involvement in choosing the destination of the project.
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