For the last month or so I’ve focused on the fundraising aspect of the crisis in Japan and not much has really changed with that. Before I get into listing the upcoming events that I’ve been made aware of recently. I wanted to put out this article from the Japan Times written by an American who became a Japanese citizen about the “fly-jin” and difficulty being a Non-Japanese person in Japan during this ordeal.
Better to be branded a ‘flyjin’ than a man of the ‘sheeple’ A short quote from the end of the article is below.
But it’s the NJ [Non-Japanese] who got it particularly bad, since the worst critics were from within their own ranks. The word “fly-jin,” remember, was coined by a foreigner, so this meanness isn’t just a byproduct of systematic exclusion from society. This is sociopathy within the excluded people themselves — eating their own, egging on domestic bullies, somehow proving themselves as “more dedicated than thou” to Japan. What did these self-loathers ultimately succeed in doing? Making NJ, including themselves, look bad.
That being said, the situation in Japan is still dire. Over this past weekend friends running Hearts for Haragama, a grassroots charity in Fukushima that I’ve written about previously trekked to help clean up. The pictures show that almost 2 months after the earthquake and tsunami, there is still a lot that has to be done. They also give hope as the owners of the Haragama Kindergarten had a small wedding on the beach, a wedding that was supposed to happen on March 12th.
It is truly amazing what the people in Fukushima are doing to help out one another.
On the Canadian front there are quite a few events and fundraisers coming up and I assume google could give me even more if I wanted. Here are a few things I’ve come across.
Family Talks Forum is a parenting support group for more than 900 Japanese families in the GTA. Their Facebook page has quite a few links to different events and charities in the GTA. They are putting on their own charity event on May 8th in Kariya Park, Mississauga. For those that are interested in Japan or maybe have kids that are, this seems like a great event to experience quite a few elements of Japanese culture. All of their proceeds, like Jason Ishida’s events that I wrote about earlier will go to the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre. The flier for the event is on the left.
The Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre based in Toronto is holding a Bazaar on May 7th from 12:30 to 4pm. They are taking donations to be sold, including food donations. Click the link for more information.
As well, the JCCC is also holding a Japan Earthquake Relief Concert on May 28th. There will be a silent auction from 5pm. Admission will be $30. This sounds pretty awesome. For the Facebook inclined here’s the event page.
For those that want to know more about events and happenings in Toronto, check out the Toronto For Japan Facebook page as it seems to be on top of pretty much everything. I think they have a pretty neat logo. If you want, volunteer your time or just promote some of the events they have posted, like running in the Toronto Marathon.
Prior to this, I really haven’t covered much that’s going on in Ottawa despite the fact that it’s where I currently live. What can I say, I don’t know anyone here. I just sit on my couch and blog. But I’m going to put a stop to that right now. The JETAA Ottawa group is having a hanami picnic on May 15th at the Experimental Farm’s Arboretum (googling where that is now) and I will try to be there, regardless of current distractions in my life. It’s not a fundraiser, but not everything has to be. In traditional hanami fashion, I’ll probably have a few cold ones on hand. Check out the video of my last hanami if you dare.
The last Ottawa event I’ll post will be put on by the Oto-wa Taiko group. Clever name. They’ll be holding a Mothers Day Japan Tsunami Relief Concert on May 8th. For information check out their website here. Taiko is something to behold, if you’ve never seen it before, go and see how amazing it is in person. Or, youtube it, but the impact won’t be the same, I assure you.
Feel free to drop me a line in the comment about any other events going on in any area, anywhere.