ASIA NOW ―アジアの現場から

Asians helping Tohoku 2012 #S8


11 volunteers from Vietnam, China, Cambodia and Myanmar joined volunteer activities in Miyagi prefecture from October 12th to 15th. They helped local people working in fishery at Ishinomaki city.

We are posting pictures on our facebook page.



◆CHANTHA from Cambodia◆
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Q:What impression did you have on Tohoku after 1.5 year of disaster?
I think that this is a very good organization because it is trying to help Japanese people who suffered from the big disaster last year by providing hope for the future even they have lost some of their relatives. This organization has done many things to make people relieve. I really like such a nice organization.

Q: Please describe your experiences and tell us your reflection of them.
It was a nice experience that I could participate with such a nice volunteer work. During this volunteer work, I went to help people who live next to the sea in Ishinomaki, Miyagi, Japan. All of them are fishermen. I helped them do some chores, for example, combining the shells inline in order to that fishermen can use them to raise some other shells (it takes around 3 years to raise), putting kinds of needle into the ropes in order that fishermen can use them catch some kinds of fish or oysters, knitting or combining together the fishing nets. All the fishermen were so happy to welcome us. They were so kind to us. They prepared delicious lunch for the volunteers. They fishermen are a little bit old, but they are still strong in minds and physics. I love them so much and I do not want to leave them. When I met all of them, I really felt missing my homeland. They told me that that community did not suffered so much from the Tsunami last year. Only two people or so died of the Tsunami. All the people in that community were so kind, talkative and helpful.

Q: What did you learn from Tohoku and what would you like to suggest to your country people in case of natural disasters that might happen in your country?
This was a very nice volunteer work because it symbolizes the way human care for one another. We are human being; we must take care of one another, especially when someone has the problem. It taught me a very good lesson that everyone should help one another when facing the problem. I hope that such a bad natural disaster like Tsunami will never happen in my country. However, if thing like that happens, I hope that all Cambodian people as well as the people around the world help one another.

Q:Your message to the people of the world.
I would like to appeal to people around the world to either create or support the volunteer work because it really plays a vital role in living the globe. Volunteer work shows a sign of adoring and caring of one another.

>>Message in Mother tongue (PDF)

◆PHUONG from Vietnam◆
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Q:What impression did you have on Tohoku after 1.5 year of disaster?
The place where we have taken short volunteer is Miyagi Prefecture. We went there by bus from Tokyo to Sendai station and then by JEN (i.e. Japanese Emergency Non Government Organization) staff's car. It is a peace land. It doesn't look like the place which has been ruined by the biggest tsunami that I have ever seen on Television as well as Internet. I couldn't image that just after 1.5 year of disaster, all of things such as infrastructure houses are rebuilt, rubbles are being cleaned, and the rhyme daily life of local people is coming back. Even though, my heart felt hurt and I cried when our car crossed the big bridge where only people at the highest place can survive and when I saw the remains damaged houses and primary schools where the children lost their lives in the disaster. I also felt sorrow when I saw a lot of new gravestones that I couldn't account. This volunteer time is my big chance not only to help the people there but also to learn the value of life. Tohoku people show to the world that life has never stopped at there.

Q: Please describe your experiences and tell us your reflection of them.
The volunteer work was not as what I imagined before I came there. The work was simple and totally was not hard. The local people drove us to an oyster farm as well as fish field in the sea by their boat. I was so excited. Specially, people are so kind and friendly. They made the delicious sashimi meal for our lunch. I also made Vietnam food for them with my happy willing. I wish that the local people always happy with their smile.

Q: What did you learn from Tohoku and what would you like to suggest to your country people in case of natural disasters that might happen in your country?
The greatest value that I learned from Tohoku volunteer tour is that our life never stops. Stay calm in any situation as that Japanese had been in the disaster. Following that way we can save as much as our life.

Q:Your message to the people of the world.
It is wonderful to take great experience at Tohoku and contribute your strong point to make more beautiful life. Let's save our environment! Let's study hard to achieve the new technologies such as a highly sensitive alarm system to forecast tsunami so we can reduce disaster's ruin.
Don't afraid of the language barrier and make the first move, Japan will not fail your expectations.

>>Message in Mother tongue (PDF)

◆NHUNG from Vietnam◆
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Q:What impression did you have on Tohoku after 1.5 year of disaster?
I was impressed by the very expeditious recovery; all things were cleaned, roads were recovered, houses were reconstructed, the residents' life was settled, however, scattering every where together with the renewed houses, were the tsunami-by-destroyed houses. I was impressed by these renewed-not-yet destroyed houses. Because at first sight, at once I thought of the tsumami's catastrophic damage, then the other thought was risen that house's owner left this land for more peaceful place without the natural disaster like here. When the flow of my thoughts stopped here, I felt that, although they had to leave the land where perhaps they were born and lived for very long time, anyway it was good for them, unlike other people, at least the owner of that house had another more peaceful place to go. However, this thought was interupted quickly by the following one: whether all people living in that house died, no one survivor to go back to that house. It's heartbreaking to think about it. If the first reason was just fugitive thoughts, latter thoughts made me contemplate a lot. Second, the streets were overwhelmed in the dark, sometimes lighten by the dim light from cars scampering away. Before coming here, I had been in Japan for two and a half years, I never thought that I could find the streets without light in Japan which were similar to that of my poor hometown in Vietnam. But now my mind was changed. Because disaster's damaging ability has no limit.

Q: Please describe your experiences and tell us your reflection of them.
People in this village are fishermen, considering fishermen' business, to me, they are also the farmers. This time I joined them to weave the fish-catching net, it was not machine-knit, we did it by hands. My family in Vietnam have a traditional career of farming, I well understand how hard the farmers' works are, because they always have to work very hard, but the profits were unstable. In my country farmers can be considered as one of the poorest classses. Before coming here, I wondered if in a top country like Japan farmers also have to work very hard. My current answer is yes, the people here had to do many things by hands, they did not have many chances to travel, to study overseas, to visit foreign countries... Their daily life was hang about in their's houses. As farmers' typical charateristics, they were also friendly and hosbitable. Now I understand that the farming career was really hard business not only in the poor countries. Any where in the world, farmers have to use much labour, hard-working and painstaking. These charateristics were what I learned from them.

Q: What did you learn from Tohoku and what would you like to suggest to your country people in case of natural disasters that might happen in your country?
I admired a very quick recovery after disater in Japan. I also wished that my country had the same conditions like here in Japan, a quick and efficient system of recovery and reaction, a good combination of residents and government, being armed with state-of-the-art equipments... One thing is for sure if the disaster like this occurred in my country, the recovery were not like that of here in Japan, no talking about the technique difference. I have been living here, witnessing the behavior and characteristic of Japanese, I learned the following properties: being honest and working for the community spirit. These charateristics, if they exist in every resident, certainly their country will be so different. Here every Japanese individual is working with the above characteristics. Without these, all good things done in Japan if being applied in my country, they will be distorted. So, arm us with honesty and commnity spirit.

Q:Your message to the people of the world.
To me, life is care and share. Modern life has made you busy with studies, businesses and works than ever, please do not forget to care and share. Do not let these things to be the future. Thank you.

>>Message in Mother tongue (PDF)

◆Lisa from China◆
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Q: 災害後1年5ヶ月が経った東北の状況について、どのような印象を持ちましたか。
震災地の皆さんがとても明るくて前向きな姿勢で毎日の生活を送っています。宮城県石巻市の狐崎漁港の復興の為、地元の人々と各ボランティア団体の人が力を合わせて一生懸命頑張っています。

Q: 東北ボランティアでの経験とその感想を聞かせてください。
今回は定置網漁で使用する捕獲網の修復のお手伝いをしました。去年の津波で捕獲網が流されてしまいました。私たちボランティアが漁師さん達から捕獲網の編み方を教えてもらって、漁師さん達と一緒に小さい捕獲網を糸で繋げて大きい捕獲網を作りました。私達留学生が網を編みながら漁師さんと震災前後漁港の話をしました。漁師達の話によると、震災後6ヶ月まで停電状態、3ヶ月まで停水状態だととても厳しい状況でした。でも漁師達が諦めず厳しい状況中で頑張ってきました。

Q: 東北ボランティアから何を学びましたか。また、自然災害についてあなたの国の人々に何を伝えたいですか。
国籍を超えて人と人との絆が感じました。留学と地元の人との絆、アジア各国から来た留学生達の絆、留学生とほかのボランティア団体の人達の絆。バックグランドウドが違う人達が同じ目標(東北の復興)を掲げて宮城県石巻市の狐崎漁港で集まって一緒に仕事をしました。皆の力を合わせてどんな困難でも切り抜けます。

Q: 世界の人々へのメッセージ
若い人が国と国との掛け橋となれ! 各国の若い人達が手を組んで一緒に頑張りましょう! 私たちが母国と日本の掛け橋となることを願っています。

>>Message in Mother tongue (PDF)

◆VIBOL from Cambodia◆
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Q:災害後1年5ヶ月が経った東北の状況について、どのような印象を持ちましたか。
石巻の人々は復興のために良く頑張っていると思います。お店や工場などを再開し、道路や建物を作り直しています。1年間半でそこまで復興できるのかと大変驚きました。また、現地の人々の笑顔を初めて直接見ることができてとても嬉しかったです。

Q: 東北ボランティアでの経験とその感想を聞かせてください。.
牡蠣や魚の養殖のために、ホタテの殻を鉄線で結ぶ作業や、網を縫う作業を手伝いました。それによって現地の皆さんがどのように生活をたてていこうと頑張っているのかを少なくても理解するとともに、牡蠣の養殖についても勉強になりました。現地の皆さんは、牡蠣や魚の養殖場所や、津波によって山崩れとなった場所に連れて行って頂きました。青い海、島や森に囲まれ、作って頂いたムール貝の味噌汁や焼魚等の海産的がとても美味しく、そこに住んでみたくなりました。 お別れの時、「災害の前の状態に戻れるように、復興を頑張る」という現地の皆さんの声を聞いて、涙が出そうになりました。また、「ボランティア活動ではなくても、機会があれば遊びに来てね」と誘われて、「はい、また来ます」と返事しました。私は海が好きなので、現地の皆さんのお仕事をもっと学びたいです。

Q: 東北ボランティアから何を学びましたか。また、自然災害についてあなたの国の人々に何を伝えたいですか。
東北の環境をみると、自然災害に対して3つの過程を行うことが必要だと考えました。1つめは、災害対策のための避難訓練です。2つめは、災害が起こった時に「大丈夫であろう」と思わず、「危険の起きる可能性がある」と考え、避難を心がけることです。3つめは、復興に関することです。復興では、建物や道路などの再建はもちろんのこと、大切なものや愛している人を奪われた被害者に精神的なサポートをすることが最も大切だと思います。母国カンボジアでは、毎年自然災害が起きていますが、そのような精神サポート活動があまりありませんので、友人を誘ってボランティアプログラムを作ってみたいと考えています。

Q: 世界の人々へのメッセージ
日本で起こった自然災害は、日本だけの災害だと言うのではなく、世界の人々の災害だと考えられます。なぜなら、自然災害はどこでも起こる可能性があり、日本の災害を学び、次の災害対策を考えるのは地球規模の問題です。また、自然災害において、物質的かつ精神的なサポートをしあうことこそが、人間のあい方として重要だと思います。

>>Message in Mother tongue (PDF)

◆BANG from Vietnam◆
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Q:What impression did you have on Tohoku after 1.5 year of disaster?
There are still some signs of the disaster in some places but almost everything has been restored. The daily life here came back to normal as before the disaster happened. That made me very impressive and I really admire the spirit of the residents here.

Q: Please describe your experiences and tell us your reflection of them.
The main works we did in two days is to helped fishermen to fix the nets and make strings of shells to feed the oyster. The work was not so hard and we worked about two hours a day so it was just very small help. I heard from the fishermen who worked with us many things about their daily life and what they do on the sea. What made me impressive is that many fishermen were elderly people but they still work and work hard. I really admire them about that.

Q: What did you learn from Tohoku and what would you like to suggest to your country people in case of natural disasters that might happen in your country?
Through the short volunteer program in Tohoku, I realized that the disaster could destroy many houses, terribly affect to the life of the residents here but it could not defeat their strong spirit and I think that's the most important factor help them restore everything quickly. So I would like to suggest to my country people that we must always be ready to face the natural disaster may happened at any time and in case it happens, don't be panic, keep a strong and optimistic spirit.

Q:Your message to the people of the world.
Tohoku's residents in particular and many people in the world still need help, let's try to help and encourage them as much as you can.