Ashinaga to participate in L.A. Marathon with high school and college students from Tohoku hit by the Mar.11 Japan earthquake and tsunami in 2011

Mar 06, 2012 15:18

TOKYO, JAPAN  March 5, 2012 - Ashinagais pleased to announce its participation in the 2012 HONDA L.A. Marathon with high school and college students from the Tohoku region devastated by the March 11 Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami in 2011.

High school students Daichi Sato (18) and Nozomi Uchimura (18) of Miyagi Prefecture, who both lost their fathers to the catastrophe, and 14 high school and college athletes selected by the Japan Association of Athletics Federations from Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures will run the biggest international marathon in the West Coast of the United States as a part of efforts to appeal for support for “Tohoku Rainbow House”, which Ashinaga is planning to construct in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture, as well as four satellite facilities along the coast hit by the tsunami. These facilities will provide emotional and psychological care to children who lost parents or guardians, or whose parent/guardian sustained a severe disability, in connection with the March 11 disaster.

 Daichi Sato and Nozomi Uchimura will talk about their tsunami experiences and hope for the future, and express their gratitude American citizens for having helped people affected by the earthquake and tsunami at various events during their stay in Los Angeles. Daich Sato will also run the 2012 LA Big 5K, the official warm up race for the 2012 Honda LA Marathon, with the high school athletes from the Tohoku region.

Ashinaga is now working to raise 3.5 billion yen (US$45 million) for the Tohoku Rainbow House and four satellite facilities, and hopes to complete them in 2014. In 2011, Ashinaga conducted very successful fundraising campaigns in New York (June); Dalian, China (September); and Paris (December). In spite of large numbers of donations for the Rainbow House project from both Japan and overseas, however, the project still requires another 1.8 billion yen (US$23 million).

Ashinaga is an education-focused non-profit organization based in Tokyo that for over 40 years has been providing financial and psychological support to children who have lost parents or guardians due to various causes. To date, Ashinaga has helped some 85,000 students, and its work has been supported by cumulative donations of 90 billion yen (US$1.15 million) from all over the world.

One of Ashinaga’s current major focuses is assistance for children who lost parents or guardians in the earthquake and tsunami in 2011. The organization is providing emergency relief grants in the amount of 2 million yen (US$25,600) per surviving child; children range from infants to graduate school students. As of February 27, 2012, 2,016 children had received the grants totaling 4 billion yen (US$50 million

※Please send us your messages at our Facebook “You Are Not Alone project.”

Ashinaga is an official charity authorized by the 2012 HONDA L.A. Marathon. The website is here

During the visit in Los Angeles, Ashinaga is planning events below.

1. Speeches by Daichi Sato and Nozomi Uchimura at Summit on Great East Japan Earthquake & Tsunami “One Year Later: Moving Forward” to be held by U.S.-Japan Council

Time/Date: 16:30 Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Venuue: Japan American National Museum, Aratani Hall

369 Eeast First Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012  Phone: (213) 625-0414

 2. Press Conference

Time/Date:09:30-10:00 Thursday, March 15, 2012

Venue: Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC)

Address: 244 S. San Pedro Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone: (213) 628-2725   URL:http://www.jaccc.org/index.php

Speakers: Hitoshi Washida, Head of Ashinaga L.A. Marathon Fundraising Project/ Daichi Sato / Nozomi Uchimura

 3. Cultural exchange with local high school students

Time/Date: 13:00-  Thursday, March 15, 2012

Venue: Crenshaw High Schoo

 Address:5010 11th Avenue Los Angeles, California90043

Participants: Daichi Sato, Nozomi Uchimura and the 14 athletes/Crenshaw High School students

 

4. EXHIBITS Clay & Petals organized in memory of the victims of the Tohoku Earthquake.

Time/Date: 09:00-09:45 Friday, March 16, 2012

Venue: Japanese American Cultural & Community Center

244 S. San Pedro Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Phone: (213) 628-2725 http://www.jaccc.org/index.php

Daichi Sato, Nozomi Uchimura and the 14 athletes from Japan visit the exhibition

5. Fundraising Campaign 

Time/Dtae: 09:00-17:00 Friday, March 16, 2012

Venue: Ashinaga’s booth to be set up at the Dodger Stadium

The 2 high school students and athletes from Japan, along with many volunteers, will ask people visiting the Stadium for donations.

6. 2012 LA Big 5 K

Time/Date: 08:00 Saturday, March 17, 2012

Start/Finish: Dodger Stadium

Daichi Sato and 6 high school athletes from Tohoku run the 2012 LA Big 5K which winds 3.1 miles (5 kilo meters) through scenic Elysian Park. Serving as the official warm up race for the 2012 Honda LA Marathon, the race draws thousands of participants many of whom are gearing up for the Honda LA Marathon the next day.

7. The Full Marathon 05:30-12:00 Sunday, March 18, 2011

8 college athletes from Tohoku run the Full Marathon (26.2 miles/42,195km) which starts at world famous Dodger Stadium and finishes at the beach in Santa Monica. The course is referred to as “The Stadium to the Sea”. It travels through Downtown Los Angeles, Hollywood Boulevard, the Sunset Strip, West Hollywood, Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, and Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica.

8. Farewell party for the 2 high school students and 14 athletes from Japan by the Japanese community in Los Angeles

18:00-20:30 Monday, March 19, 2012

Venue: The Japanese American Cultural & Community Center (JACCC)

The Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Southern California, Japan America Society of Southern California and other Japanese American organizations will cheer up and say a farewell to Daichi Sato, Nozomi Uchimura and the 14 high school and college athletes from the Tohoku region devastated by the earthquake and tsunami.

 

*Ashinaga has been looking for registered runners who will run the L.A. Marathon wearing Ashinaga’s T-shirts, and volunteers who will help Ashinaga conduct a fundraising campaign.

 Ashinaga is an official charity authorized by the 2012 HONDA L.A. Marathon

The above events will be organized by Ashinaga in cooperation with, and under the sponsorship of, the Japan Association of Athletics Federations, the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles, KOREAN AIR, ANA, Miyako Hotel Los Angeles, asics, the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Southern California, Los Angeles Dodgers, Japan America Society of Southern California, The Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Japan Foundation, The Japanese American Cultural & Community Center, and many other friendly organizations.

 

Ashinaga media contacts:                 

Hiroshi Iizuka iizuka@ashinaga.org

Phone (L.A.) +1-424-254-4950 (March 14-21, 2012)

 

Izumi Tanaka AshinagaLA@me.com

Phone (L.A.): +1-(310)749-9091


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