In writing Kibō I wanted to console and assist those survivors who were struggling to rebuild their lives and livelihoods after the March 11, 2011 disaster. And, I wanted Kibō to be a way for the global community to share and support the aspirations and resolve of the people of the Tohoku. Both my publisher, Ten Speed Press, and I have pledged to donate half of our respective proceeds to support the work of Japanese non-profit organizations in the Tohoku region. We have designated our contributions be used to Sponsor Fellows for Tohoku and Japan’s Recovery. This project, launched and managed by Entrepreneurial Training for Innovative Communities (ETIC) has a dual goal: creating jobs in the area devastated by the disaster and developing a new generation of business leaders in Japan. On this page, Moving Forward, I introduce you to the work of some of those Fellows and the Tohoku-local businesses they are helping to jump-start.

Rikuzen Takata, a small coastal community in Iwate Prefecture, was  wiped away by the tsunami on March 11, 2011. Horrifying, mesmerizing, news-reel footage played the scene over and over to the world. In the wake of the disaster, assistance poured in to support the efforts of local community organizers. Among the many projects initiated was the Mirai Shōtengai, "Shopping Street for the Future," a cluster of shops and businesses housed in pre-fabricated building units.

      RIKU   ZEN   TAKA   TA  

陸前高田

locals pronounce the final syllable da, not ta

未来

mirai
商店街

shōtengai


Naoko TANESAKA (ETIC Fellow)

After graduating from Kyoto City University of Arts she worked in Nagoya as a designer. In her university days she had visited Rikuzen Takata and after the Disaster wanted to put her talents to use in their recovery efforts.

ブロックハチマルハチ

営業時間: ランチ11:00~14:30 ディナー 17:00~22:00

震災前所在地: 〒029-2205岩手県陸前高田市高田町字馬場前104-3

電話: 090-7663-8430

Ryo KUMAGAI 

After working in several Tokyo and Tohoku establishments, Ryo Kumagai opened the café of his dreams in 2008 in his hometown, Rikuzen Takata. His carefully prepared, original cuisine served in stylish surroundings drew an appreciative crowd. Then the Disaster of March 2011 hit, wiping away both his business and his home.

What’s on the menu at BRICKS.808?

HOPE, well-seasoned with appreciation. Daily luncheon and dinner specials that feature local produce, eggs, chicken, meat, wine and baked goods.

Local artist Ayako Fujimoto signs her dynamic mural that decorates Bricks.808.

Devastated by his own loss, Kumagai recognized the need for creating a comforting space where locals could gather -- to enjoy good food, and the company of others. Kumagai began planning for a new café. His eatery would become one of many retail operations to be housed in the newly conceived Rikuzen Takada Mirai Shotengai. With the encouragement and support of ETIC and other organizations and community leaders, Kumagai opened BRICKS HACHI MARU HACHI (Bricks.808) on May 7, 2012.


For more information about the Fellows Project, and an opportunity for you to make a contribution, please visit my KIBŌ page at GlobalGiving