These groups offer assistance to people living in Japan with the many difficult issues they face. Some of the assistance including food testing, radiation exposure tests, summer camps in radiation free areas, relocation assistance an education.
*We will be adding groups to this list on an ongoing basis, please check back. If you know of a group providing assistance that we should list please provide a brief explanation of the group in English along with a link to their website. Send information to firstname.lastname@example.org/web
Friends of the Earth Japan
Friends of the Earth Japan:
About Friends of Earth Japan and the POKA-POKA Project for Fukushima Children
Friends of Earth Japan (FoE) is a member of the international environmental NGO network, Friends of the Earth. After 3/11, FoE established an “energy team” that has since been working to support Fukushima residents, particularly with regards to reducing children’s exposure to radiation.
In April 2011, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) issued a directive to set 20mSv/year as the permissible limit of radiation exposure for children while at
school. As this was as high as the permissible limit for adults working at nuclear power plants, concerned parents, NGOs, and citizen groups raised voices of protest. This led the MEXT to issue
another directive, promising to make efforts to lower the level of radiation exposure for schoolchildren below 1mSv/year. However, the 20mSv/year limit remains within government policy for designating evacuation zones, and the new 1mSv/year directive fails to take into account the amount of radiation children are exposed to outside schools. In collaboration with residents of highly contaminated areas, we tried to negotiate with the government to reconsider these standards, but unfortunately we were unsuccessful.
We thus launched the “Fukushima POKA-POKA Project” in December 2011 in collaboration with three other NGOs, in hopes of responding to the desires of Fukushima residents to temporarily evacuate their children until decontamination efforts are complete. This project mainly focuses on residents of contamination “hot-spots” of Fukushima City, supporting children, pregnant women and families through temporary evacuation retreats to Tsuchiyu Hot Springs, an area of very low contamination within Fukushima prefecture. A total of 2,200 parents and their children were able to participate in the first two terms of the project that took place between January and June of 2012. As there are hardly any other programs that offer weekend retreats, we received many requests to continue this program. Most recently, we collaborated with the Minami Boso Youth Camp in Chiba to host a summer retreat for 25 children from Fukushima City from August 20th to the 23rd. This coming fall we will resume our weekend evacuation program at Tsuchiyu Hot Springs, and come December, we will organize another retreat in Chiba.
We deeply appreciate your continued support in this endeavor. Donations can be made through the following link:
The fight for the rights of residents of Fukushima is ongoing. In recent months we appealed to the national Diet committee for the provision of adequate compensation for “voluntary” evacuees, as well as for the establishment of the “right to evacuate”, and created the space to elicit public opinion on these matters. As a result, while the “right to evacuate” was acknowledged, the amount of compensation granted to voluntary evacuees remained negligible.
Therefore, along with lawyer groups, victims of the disaster, and citizen groups, we pushed for the establishment of lawmaker-initiated legislation for the support of victims of the nuclear accident. The resulting Nuclear Accident Child Victim’s Law, passed on June 21st, 2012, aims to expand the target region of government support, and considers the right of citizens to choose to remain where they are, evacuate, or to return to their original home. It further aims to provide adequate medical and livelihood support to residents and children. We, along with the victims of the Fukushima disaster, will continue to approach the government and to pay close attention to the implementation of this law, in order to ensure that sufficient and effective support efforts are actually carried out.