We’ve shipped 180 wheelchairs for Myanmar. *

  The ship loaded with 180 wheelchairs for Myanmar left Tokyo port on October 8, expecting to reach Yangon Port via Port Klang in Malaysia around October 28. The number of wheelchairs donated to Myanmar is going to be 495 in total. 180 wheelchairs are to be provided for four hospitals in affiliation with Myanmar Department of Health; National Rehabilitation Hospital, Yangon Children Hospital, Yankin Children Hospital, and Mandalay children Hospital. The Donation record graph is from here.

  We had difficulty in refurbishing wheelchairs for Myanmar this time due to the spread of New Coronavirus. We had planned 90 wheelchair donation at first, but we were asked to donate more as there are four hospitals which need wheelchairs for their patients. In order to meet their request, we held a mini-meeting several times with many volunteers’ support and finally we made it.

  It was Vietnamese group who played an important part in both cleaning and refurbishing work in those mini-meetings. There were also Sagami Women’s University group, Ethiopian group, and dedicated voluntary members joining the activity. Plus, the members of NGO Youth Support Center, who have been a great support for us, helped to clean, refurbish, and pack so many wheelchairs. All this help made it possible for us to send 180 wheelchairs to Myanmar despite the new coronavirus. We’d like to express our gratitude to everyone who supported us.

  Before the ship’s departure, we did loading 180 wheelchairs into a container on September 29. As we wanted to avoid a big meeting, only a few people, employees of Tama Packing Company and our staff, did the loading work.

Putting wheelchairs stored in the warehouse on a pallet and loading them into the container.

Checking the number of each wheelchair and circling the number on the sheet, making it clear that 180 wheelchairs are surely loaded.

(Left) Putting boards in so that loads will not drop when the door is opened, and loading more wheelchairs.
(Right) Putting the red seal lock after finishing loading, sign of completion.

(Left) Today’s staff.
(Right) The container leaving for Tokyo port.

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 We had a mini-meeting on September 13.*

  September 13, a cool Sunday for a mini-meeting. The participants were Vietnamese group, Sagami Women’s University group, and voluntary members. We all took our temperature, sterilized our hands with alcohol, and started working with a mask on to prevent the new coronavirus infection.
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 We had a mini-meeting, the last one in August.*

  August 30, another very hot day, we had kind of a ‘big’ mini-meeting: Ethiopian group and Vietnamese group, less than twenty participants in total 18.
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  We cancel our meetings from September thru December.

  We cancel our monthly meeting in the regular style from September through December. The new coronavirus threat seems to be in the midst of the second wave. The government has been carrying on the GO TO TRAVEL campaign, but Tokyo is not included in it. We should take great care of protecting ourselves.
We cancel our monthly meetings with a large number of people as we did before in order to prevent the infection from our activities. When the situation gets better and the corona threat comes to end, we will restart our regular meetings. We will announce it on our website then.
  During the time of cancelation, we’re planning to hold mini-meetings in small groups(5 ~ 10 people). The activities are cleaning, refurbishing, and packing wheelchairs. If you give a call to Morita, we’ll make arrangement for your convenience. We have prepared alcohol, thermometer(measurable in three seconds), face shields, and mouth shields. We’d like you to join our activity with the perfect countermeasure against corona.

   We’re looking forward to your participation in a small group. If you’d like to work in this way, please make contact to Morita.

  As for collecting wheelchairs, we will go and receive them as long as there are more than ten of them. If you know somebody who can offer wheelchairs, please contact Morita, too.

August 27, 2020    Hirokazu Morita

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  A father and mother delivered wheelchairs for us.*

  While we’re having a mini-meeting with Vietnamese group, a father and mother from Yamanashi delivered a wheelchair and a sitting-position aid chair for us. Their daughter had grown out of the chairs and they’d been wondering what to do with them. Then they happened to find the website of our NGO.
  They called our president, Mr. Morita, and decided to deliver the chairs on the day of our mini-meeting, August 23. We told them we’re sure to take care and send them to Myanmar. Both the wheelchair and the sitting-position aid chair are so clean that they need no cleaning nor refurbishing. They say that the father was taking care of the chairs daily and did extra cleaning for this delivery. We feel really grateful to them.

August 24, 2020 Secretariat

 Father and mother, wheelchair, sitting-position aid chair, and Mr. Morita.

(Left) We made entry of the chairs right away. They are in very
good condition. They also have hoods for sunshade and rainproof.
(Right) Sitting-position aid.

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 We held a mini-meeting for the 2nd time.*

  Since the new coronavirus has made us unable to do regular activities, we’ve continued to hold mini-meetings.
  On August 23, when the heat got a little less severe, the Vietnamese group joined our meeting. The three of them are quite helpful as their refurbishing skills have made great progress after they got instructions from Mr. Miyata of Wakuwaku Kobo. They did refurbishing work for Myanmar on that day. Thank you, the Vietnamese group!

August 24, 2020 Secretariat

The Vietnamese group members.

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 We held a mini-meeting.*

  On August 9, Sunday, we held a meeting in a small group. Mr. Miyata from Wakuwaku Kobo in Hanno came over to give us refurbishing instructions like the previous time. We did refurbishing work taking care of ourselves to prevent the new coronavirus and heat illness as well.
  We’d like to thank everyone coming today in such difficult conditions. The Myanmar project is going forward little by little. We appreciate your hard work. Thank you!

August 9, 2020    Secretariat

Voluntary members exchange front wheels under Mr. Miyata’s guidance.

(Left) There are a variety of tools. Mr. Miyata instructed us on the use of suitable tools.
(Right) Today’s participants.

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   Our activity in a new style.

  The new coronavirus infection has been spreading so widely that we could say it might be the second wave. It’s a situation we can get infected anytime and anywhere. So our activities such as collecting wheelchairs, cleaning and refurbishing them and finally sending them have been greatly restricted. We’ve already canceled our monthly meeting from March through August, and it’s impossible to say when and how we can restart it. We will let everyone know when we can judge it’s possible. Until then we will not hold the monthly meeting on a large scale as we did in the past.

  Although our situation is like that, there are lots of overseas disabled children waiting for our wheelchairs. So we’ve tried working in a small group so as to meet their requests. Voluntary members of five or so have met to do refurbishing work a few times. The members come when they are available, not on the fixed day. As they work in a small group, the results are cleaning about ten wheelchairs or refurbishing about five wheelchairs; rather small numbers compared to regular monthly meetings. Even so, these small gatherings have made it possible to increase the number of wheelchairs we can send to overseas children. Our present activity is wheelchair cleaning, refurbishing and packaging for Myanmar.

  As for collecting wheelchairs, we’ve done almost nothing since April, but we’d like to restart it, taking good care not to get infected. We can go and receive wheelchairs as long as there are more than ten of them. Please make a contact to Morita.

August 7, 2020    Hirokazu Morita

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 A member of our NGO has brought three wheelchairs.*

  One of our NGO members, Ms. Nagamine, has brought three wheelchairs which she had received from her friends to our warehouse. She is a regular voluntary member of our NGO and she always joins our activity with her daughter, Kanon. It’s nice of her to bring wheelchairs she’s got from her friends at Kanon’s special school now and then. Thank you!

   As for wheelchairs from special schools, there has been little supply from schools in the Kanto district since April due to new coronavirus, though many schools say, “(Please wait) Until Corona has settled down.” So the warehouse we rent for storing wheelchairs has much open space now. The stock will become even smaller when we have finished Myanmar project.

July 31, 2020   Secretariat  

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 We did refurbishing work in a small group.*

  As we are still under the influence of the new coronavirus, we did refurbishing work in a small group. In spite of the changeable weather five members came for today’s activity: Mr. Miyata from Waku Waku Kobo Co., Ltd., three members from Vietnamese group, and one of our director, Mr. Akine.
  Mr. Miyata, who does manufacturing and sales of wheelchairs and sitting retainers at Waku Waku Kobo in Hanno city, is a pro technician and he came over to give us technical support. There were also three Vietnamese members experienced in refurbishing work. We don’t want to run any risk of corona virus infection, so we’ve decided to do our activity with a small number of people. While working we kept complete sterilization with alcohol in mind and we got all the members to wear a face shield.

July 26, 2020      Hirokazu Morita

(Left) Refurbishing work in the warehouse. We worked instructed by Mr. Miyata(right front).
(Right) It was so muggy inside. We took a rest for water so as not to have a heat stroke.

I did an arm touch with Mr. Miyata instead of shaking hands.

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