Thursday, May 5, 2011

A Day for Children

There were a total of 101 Koi fish decorating the sky at Takadanobaba Park. We call these Koi-nobori (鯉のぼり). May 5 is Children's Day here in Japan and it's tradition to fly these Koi-nobori to wish the children a long and healthy life.

Even in the tsunami-struck areas, people are celebrating Children's Day. In a shelter in Ofunato City (Iwate Prefecture), some university student volunteers collected 60 Koi-nobori to fly for the many children there to enjoy. In an interview a little girl says, "Even though the tsunami took everything, I'm happy to have a fun day like this." I think the Koi-nobori has a deeper meaning for everyone this year more than ever.

I also wanted to introduce you to a blogger friend, Kevin, who is taking on a big project to help the many children in the disaster struck areas in Japan through the NGO group, Save the Children. He is training for a 60km ultra-marathon in the Kansai area next month as a fundraiser. To a girl like me who huffs and puffs just walking up a hill, I have a lot of respect for someone who can run miles...or in this case, kilometers. So I'm hoping I can support Kevin in a small way by giving a shout out to his Running To Help Japan project, which you can read about here. Or you can watch the Youtube video he made below!

We're closing in on 2 months since the initial March 11 earthquake and there are still many people living in shelters. In Miyagi, Iwate, and Fukushima Prefectures, there is said to be over 100 underage children who have lost both parents, and so many more who have lost either parent. I'm sure their daily lives have altered drastically, more than I can imagine. But I hope today that many of them were able to enjoy just being children and have a fun day outside, seeing the Koi-nobori fly.

Happy Children's Day!


  1. One day things will get back to normal. These koi fish are absolutely lovely.

  2. Aww, if I'd known earlier, I would have sent some virtual ones to my nieces.

    My sister and their church are raising funds for the tsunami victims who are still in shelters. They still live in Tokyo so they feel it strongly. That's aside from the fundraising she's doing for Type 1 Diabetes research.

    She and her children are one reason why I disappeared for two months, aside from the three "New beginnings" posts that you commented on. I just got overwhelmed again.

    Thank you for the welcome back, and I really hope nothing disastrous happens again to distract me. I'm praying for so many people and countries, it's heartaching.

    I hope you are well, Kaori, and I hope you are liking your new home. Missed you too.

  3. What a lovely tradition. The colors are beautiful!

  4. In situations like this, I can only imagine how hard it is for everyone esp. to those who're deeply affected.
    a special day for the kids is something encouraging and meaningful.
    I hope it doesn't happen again,
    but life, like always is unpredictable.

    I think Kevin is one of the many unsung heroes.
    the Kois are very inspiring and colorful.

  5. An image full of joy for what must be a day of hope, and not only for the children!

  6. Happy Children's Day and Happy Golden Week.

  7. You made hope able to be seen.

    All the very best of thoughts, patience and strenght for them all.

    daily athens

  8. I am sure that soaring up into the blu sky, carp streamers uplifted people's sprit all over Japan.
    I was moved by his decision which is very noble. He is a hero.
    I pray for him. Kevin, Good luck with ultra-marathon!!

  9. Love the fish and celebration. I hope those children were happy for a few moments at least.

  10. a beautiful initiative !

  11. A great children's celebration on May 5! I remember those koi fish kites!
    Yesterday as "cinquo de mayo" - a Mexican celebration celebrated around here.

  12. My sister bought one of those when she visited Japan. I think it's a great festival :)


Thank you so much! Love it when you comment! xx