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Inviting Fukushima Children to a healthy respite in Hawai’i


Published on 19 Jun 2013

On today’s podcast, Maggie and Nat interview our very inspiring friend Yumi Kikuchi. Fairewinds has been working with Yumi for more than a year now. She encouraged us to send material to the Tokyo Peace Film Festival, which she organized, and we sent our film “You are not alone.” Yumi also co-sponsored Arnie’s trip to Japan in 2012, where he gave the presentation “Japan at a Crossroads: Two Futures.” Yumi left Japan with her family after the Fukushima Daiichi accident, and currently lives in Hawaii. She founded the Fukushima Kids Hawaii Project (FKHP), usually shortened to Fukushima Kids, and has just returned to Japan where she will be spreading awareness about the project and fundraising. Fukushima Kids aims to host children from Fukushima in Hawaii during school vacations, where they can play outdoors safe from high radiation levels. Children are more vulnerable to the effects of radiation than adults, and we are already seeing signs of thyroid cancer and cysts among children in Fukushima. There are about 300,000 kids living in the Fukushima prefecture, and Yumi is hoping to host 15 kids this first summer.

Children in Fukushima found developing Thyroid Cancer after March 11, 2011 earthquake and nuclear disaster.

The highest number reported is 58 and lowest 26, which varies depending on the new source. But thyroid cancer is a very rare disease for children, normally one per million children. It is also said 1/3 of children already have thyroid cysts, a big concern for parents.

I am a mother of 4 children, lived in Chiba, Japan until March 11, 2011 earthquake tsunami and nuclear disaster.  When I saw  “Station blackout at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plants” on TV that night, I made a decision to get the children as far away as possible, and went to Okinawa where we established a community effort to evacuate pregnant women and children from Fukushima to Okinawa. 

We then moved to Kona, Hawaii, where we live today, starting Fukushima Kids Hawai’i, inviting the children of Fukushima to Hawai’i Island to let them experience a healthy respite from radiation exposure. Health of children is very important for me. Our government instead campaigning the safety of low level radiation and even promote “Eat Fukushima food campaign”, appealing its safety.  Majority of produce in Fukushima contains radioactive isotopes and children should not eat radiation in my opinion, nor expose themselves to radiation. I want all kids to have a long healthy life and you can contribute to it by participating this campaign.

7 Kids are coming to Hawai’i This Winter

During Christmas holidays(Dec 20 to Jan 3), we are inviting 7 school children age 10 to 17 and a chaperon from Fukushima to Kona for 2 weeks stay. The cost of the airfare per person is $1700 plus food, lodging and activities in Hawaii cost another $800, so total of $2500/person times 8=$15,000 is needed.

We also invite mothers with babies to Fukushima Kids Hawaii House, a 3 bed room house in Kona, to experience a health respite for the babies up to 3 months with their mother (or father).  The cost of keeping the house is $2000 a month, $24000 a year.  

We also invited more children as we raise enough fund during their summer vacation for 1 months, which costs another $31,000. Our annual cost of the campaign is $70,000.

  • We have raised $2000 by garage sale, silent auction, dance party and concert. So we now need $3000 by December 20, 2013 and $13000 by January 15, 2013.
  • We also need to raise another $55000 by the end of September 2014 for Fukushima Kids Hawaii House and Fukushima Kids Hawaii Summer Program.
  • Your support is very important for the health and survival of children in and around Fukushima (now that the radiation from Fukushima is spreading all over the world through air and water, the future of children in the pacific and northern hemisphere are at stake)
  • Our project will raise awareness of the radiation and health and support children’s health in the world.
  • Yumi (I) and friends have succeeded to move 264 women and children from Fukushima and surrounding area after the disaster to Okinawa.
  • We invited 6 children and one chaperon this summer for one full month! They had a great time and made connections in Hawaii. They now know there are people in Hawaii and world who care. Now they know they can ask for support and speak up for their right to live a healthy life, not threatened by radiation.

Other Ways You Can Help

If you can not contribute monetary, please share this link to your friends.  Some of your friends may be able to contribute.  We value every support!. Please do what you can!  Thank you for your time and effort for reading this to the end. Your care and support is needed and appreciated. Mahalo Mahalo.

December 11, 2013 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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