WORK CAMP

A person x another one =infinite happiness!!

What’s “WORK CAMP”?

Japanese students and youth in the colony live together in order to think and solve problems in the colony together.

Through living to work and solve problems together with colony people, the relationship between supporter and supported would be mutual. Not “supporter” and “supported”, but ME and Granpa-Mahato.

While it reduces stigma of neighbor residents against them, their self-stigma also reduces, and grow their self-esteem.

Think with them, Work with them, and Grow with them. This is Work Camp!

Work- Work together

With colony people, we work for improvement of infrastructure which is terrible right now. We conduct work, such as house repair and building tube-well.

Improvement of their living environment always brings good effect on colony people.

By repairing roof with holes, kids can study even when it rains outside. By building tube-well, they always can get sufficient amount of safe water even in summer.

Also, by paving roads where scraps of grime and gravel are scattered with concrete, elderly people with after effects can now walk safely without injuring.

Improving the living environment not only improves the quality of life, but also increases their self-esteem. As a result, they will be able to live healthily both physically and mentally.

Camp- live together

Japanese students and colony people live together under the same roof for about 2 weeks.

We eat rice from the same pot, sleep in sleeping bags lining up as Japanese Kanji letter 川,river. We got surprised how spicy the curry is which made by colony people, and laughed at colony people eating Japanese cuisine and making funny faces. Sometimes we talk honestly and argue, sometimes look up at the starry sky and talking with each other. This is how we build equal one person and another relationship.

We don’t know how to raise a fire. We don’t know how to put in a mosquito net. We don’ know how to wash cloths by hand. Japanese students are too immature, and there are many things they cannot do or understand, but they always help us with warm heart. 

During work camp, Japanese students and colony people help each other. There is no such concept of “supporter” and “supported” anymore.

Study- study together

We conduct enlightenment activities, such as an interview type questionnaire survey and lecturers to teach correct knowledge about Hansen disease to neighbor residents on the street in order to eliminate discrimination against Hansen disease.

In addition, for the colony people, to maintain self-esteem by keeping the colony beautiful and clean, we set up a mid/long-term theme, “We keep our colony clean!”. We conduct activities such as raising awareness of not throwing rubbish on the road.

Considering how colony people have different habits and ways of thinking from us, we have to make the enlightenment interesting for them. We have done a picture-story at a square in a colony, a theater at a party to enjoy with colony people.

Enjoy-enjoy together

During work camp, we hold a party to have a good time with colony people since they have less pastime time due to poverty.

Not only inviting colony people, but also residents in the vicinity to the party, it gives opportunities for colony people and surrounding residents to get acquainted with each other and eliminate their discrimination consciousness and self-stigma. This is one of the aims of hosting a party.

Soran-Bushi which is a Japanese traditional dance is always Japanese students’ favorite, and also a favorite song of colony people. When a song is played, both children and adults dance together with us.

We dance, sing, play with colony people at a party. The music and laughter last till midnight.