Rakuten Tasuke ai Project
Getting back to normal
Hello, everyone! I’m Sanae with Rakuten Tasuke ai.
How did you spend March 11 this year?
I went through my typical daily routine, but from when I woke up until I went to sleep it felt like a part of my mind was looking back on my actions of last March 2011.
I remember thinking that I did this in the morning and I did that in the afternoon last March 11, or that I felt this type of emotion after the Great East Japan Earthquake. These were my thoughts during this March 11. I also found myself very grateful for the fact that today I can go on with my daily routine.
Changing topics a bit, yesterday (March 21) was actually the delivery date for the bicycles donated by everyone as part of the 42nd Rakuten Tasuke ai Project.
I’ve yet to look over the delivery report, but before I do I have one thing to mention.
The shopkeeper of Cycle Network,<!—[if !supportAnnotations]—>[YM1]<!—[endif]—> the shop that sold the bicycles, has spent more than 30 years engaged in traffic safety activities as a certified bicycle safety instructor.
Whenever I talked with him before, I recognized just how passionate he is about bicycle safety and how he focuses his efforts in this area over business.
Actually, I’m not really good at riding a bicycle, but that’s a secret, you know. (^^*
The shopkeeper contacted me and said that he had held a bicycle and traffic safety class for students at Mangokuura Elementary School in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture in advance of the bicycle deliveries.
(The shopkeeper is willing to go anywhere in Japan to teach bicycle safety and has done so at countless schools in the past.)
He has developed his own curriculum that requires more than three hours to cover. Classes are split between lower grades, middle grades and higher grades. He does everything himself, which must be a lot of work, but I can imagine that his passion means he doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to instructing students. (^^*
His classes are carefully tailored to fit the actual circumstances of the local community. Curriculum for this particular session included a range of topics from explanations about regional traffic changes since the earthquake using video footage, to the rules of the road when riding a bike on a public street as well as bicycle maintenance / upkeep and explanations on dangerous areas on the way to school using actual images shot in and around the Mangokuura district.
Apparently, the students in his class listened quite enthusiastically.
The news covers a lot of major issues in these communities, such as debris disposal operation and employment, which are each, of course, quite important, but I also felt the shopkeeper is doing a wonderful service by humbly instructing students about something that is very important in their everyday lives and that often tends to be overlooked. (^^*
I thought it would be even more wonderful to let everyone know that this type of effort is a key part of the reconstruction effort.
The Rakuten Tasuke ai Project is still underway.
The next activity includes donations of bicycles and helmets to Kazuma Elementary School in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture. We also plan to deliver face masks to elementary and junior high school students in Minami Soma City, Fukushima Prefecture as well as tool sets to all temporary housings located in Iwate Prefecture.
Take a look when you have the time.