Events for encouraging Fukushima citizens
There were many survivors who were concerned about their physical and mental health due to effects from the Fukushima Daiichi accident and the inconvenient lives in temporary housing. Being moved by live music, shedding tears or laughing by watching a movie were believed to be important to their physical and mental well-being. Based on this concept, the Fukushima Chapter organized and held 20 events for the survivors from FY 2012 to FY 2014.
Many famous artists agreed to the concept. Live concerts of classical music, acoustic instruments and Japanese instruments, etc. were held thanks to the cooperation of the artists. The players made encouraging remarks to the survivors from the stage.
Some movie screening events were held. The movies included “HAYABUSA” (a story about a large-scale Japanese project of a planetary exploration spacecraft rover) and “Madagascar 3”. Before the screening of “HAYABUSA”, Prof. Terazono, an associate professor at the University of Aizu, gave a mini lecture on the project.
Lecture by Mr. So Kuramoto
Mr. So Kuramoto, a famous Japanese playwright, empathized with Fukushima Prefecture which was severely damaged by the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami and the Fukushima Daiichi accident. He wrote and enacted a new drama set in Minamisoma City of the prefecture. The Fukushima Chapter planned and held lectures by Mr. Kuramoto.
These events were held in various locations of the prefecture from FY 2012 to FY 2014. The venues are shown on the map below.
Venue map [PDF]
The event programs for encouraging Fukushima citizens started in September 2012. In FY 2012, some movies were screened and a live concert played by “BONTEN the Japanese Drum Team” was also held.
The Fukushima Chapter held five live concerts including a classical concert in collaboration with a rakugo (Japanese traditional comic stories) storyteller.
The Fukushima Chapter held live concerts, movie screenings and a lecture by Mr. So Kuramoto.
Comment by Fukushima Chapter staff
■ Background of the program:
The Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami and the Fukushima Daiichi accident caused an enormous damage to Fukushima citizens. In particular, concerns about their future and harmful rumors caused by the nuclear accident forced them to suffer hardships. The Fukushima citizens were greatly hurt psychologically.
The Fukushima citizens were feeling depressed by the damage caused by the earthquake and tsunami and also by the damage, concerns and harmful rumors caused by the Fukushima Daiichi accident.
■ Why did we begin this program?
We began to think about what would possibly bring some relaxation to the Fukushima citizens and provide them with some pleasure. We concluded that live music and inspiring films would be encouraging and contribute to their psychological care. That is why we began to organize the events.
■ The survivors’ situation:
They needed something which gave them an opportunity to recover themselves.
■ Good points:
The live concert players understood that we were going to hold the concerts as a recovery assistance program and they agreed to a low performance fee. In film screening, the necessary people were very helpful in allowing the screening events. What made us happiest was that the survivors enjoyed the events very much and left the venues with smiling faces.
■ Difficult points:
We had never implemented this kind of program. Therefore, it took a lot of time and effort to make the arrangements when we started the program.