Awesome day today meeting with 2 brave mothers and their children in Shichigahama – an island close to the epi-center of the March 11 earthquake/tsunami.
Both these ladies and their families lost their homes to the tsunami. We were able to spend time with them, pray and give them gifts for their children from Japan Alive and blankets from the Kyōyū kyōyū – share group in the UK.
Here are their stories:
Kiyomi has a 1-year-old boy and 7-year-old girl. They are currently living in the refugee center while their husband/father has to work and live in Sendai city to provide for the family. When there was warning of the tsunami, Kiyomi quickly evacuated to a nearby hill but decided to run back to her home to grab milk, rice and the rice cooker for her children as she knew she would not be able to return! That terrifying night, she with 40 other people, stayed on the hill. The next day a helicopter came to rescue them – telling them to hold on tightly to their small belongings. From that day on, they have stayed at the shelter in safety.
They are currently in line for temporary housing which they hope to move into by the end of June (one month earlier than originally planned). During this time, they hope to rebuild their home in their village.
Rumiko and her husband, and two children of 4 years old and 1 years old, lost their home to the tsunami. They are now living in one room with their relatives. Rumiko shared with us that the aftershocks are very scary for the children. When they happen (which is frequent), the children wake up straight away and run to her for a hug. She shared that her greatest hope is for her children – that they will be able to smile and have fun once again – and then this will make her happy.