The reason Peace Boat’s Disaster Volunteer Centre was able to receive international volunteers from 56 countries and regions around the world is because of the presence of bilingual volunteers to support communication. We have also been working with the local municipality and other gruops in Tokyo to provide information in languages other than English to support people in the case of a disaster, including making the Spanish translation of the Assistance Manual for Foreigners in Times of Disaster, which includes information in around 60 categories such as where to go to get food during a disaster or where to submit necessary applications.
2013 has begun Peace Boat’s Disaster Relief Volunteer Centre’s respective projects are well underway. These projects all correspond to disaster relief, meaning that the project plan is being constantly reconsidered and revised as it is being implemented. It is important for our volunteers and also the organisation itself to remember to “think flexibly, and move according to the circumstances.” This report gives an overview of the main ongoing activities for 2013, including those which are now accepting volunteers, donations and other support.
The second part of the Shinjuku Multicultural and Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Discussion City Walk took part in Takadanobaba, home to the Peace Boat office.
On November 24 2012, around 20 people including students, members of NGOs and NPOs based in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward, representatives of the Social Welfare Council and Peace Boat international staff gathered for the Multicultural and Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Discussion City Walk. This programme was implemented as part of the disaster volunteer skills training, and so graduates of Peace Boat’s Disaster Relief Volunteer Leader Training also participated.
Peace Boat is proud to announce the launch in September 2012 of the Disaster Volunteer Training programme, designed to help prepare for future disasters. This is a four-step program composed of both introductory and intermediate-level courses.
By hosting these classes around the country and offering online certification, we hope to provide as many people as possible with the opportunity to learn these skills and knowledge.
Peace Boat conducts Disaster Relief Volunteer Training both in Japan (in Tokyo and the earthquake and tsunami affected areas of Ishinomaki, Miyagi) and onboard its ship throughout global voyages. This onboard programme not only equips participants with the knowledge and skills to volunteer in a disaster situation, but also gives them first hand experience of disaster mitigation and relief programmes around the world. This video shows the programme onboard and in Cuba during Peace Boat’s 75th Global Voyage, 2012. A film by Chloe White
The first term of the “Disaster Relief Volunteer Leader Training,” in which 15 people participated from November 5-11, has successfully finished. From November 19, 13 participants also joined.
This report interviews two people who participated in the first term, sharing their impressions of the seven days.
The first term of the Disaster Volunteer Leader training took place in Ishinomaki from November 5-11, 2011. Participants received training in safety and first aid, volunteer coordination, leadership skills and more. See here for details.
Orientations, training and safety measures for volunteers have been developed greatly as the activities have proceeded over the past six months. Read here for further information about such issues.