Maria’s Summer Visit 2019

posted in: News

An important part of Aid For Japan’s mission is to reach out to some of the orphans from the tragic events of 2011. While the charity aims to connect with these children through the annual summer residential courses, it’s also beneficial for the orphans to visit the UK when the charity can arrange it.

For children that have lost their parents, this is an important step that not only broadens their view of the world but also reminds them that the world remembers them.

This summer, Maria was one of the orphans who made the journey from Japan. Maria is one of the children that Aid For Japan has supported since the early days of the charity (as seen in this special TV coverage). As ever, Maria initially stayed with Aid For Japan founder Akemi and husband Richard who both did their best to make Maria feel at home.

For any curious teenager, it’s always interesting to take in the sights around London. On that basis, Maria and Akemi made visits to the National Gallery, Tate Modern and the ever-popular Harry Potter tour. But there was also time for shopping, which included trips to Piccadilly, Covent Garden, Camden Market and Old Bond Street. She was also lucky enough to get a tour of St Martins Art College and to take in a musical in London.

On this visit to the UK, Maria also went a little further afield to stay with a new host family for a brief period in Bury St Edmond.

Exploring food is also an adventure – and Maria managed to show off her own baking and cooking skills. As well as making lemon cake and brownies, she prepared a special Japanese-style hamburger dinner as a thank you to Akemi and Richard for looking after her.

On one particularly pleasant summer day, Maria was also treated to a special picnic in a London park. For a brief afternoon, it allowed her to enjoy the tranquility and peace of nature – and also to enjoy a tasty picnic lunch!

Although her UK trip allowed Maria to take a break from her routine in Japan, school work is still important and she diligently did her homework when time allowed. She even helped with the administration of the charity by assisting with the donation box cash calculations.

Maria, like so many of the orphans of the 2011 earthquake/tsunami, is faced with the memories of that tragic event on a daily basis. Having the opportunity to enjoy a few days in a different environment, which brings them happier memories, is an important step in the road to recovery.


Aid For Japan extends its gratitude to all those that have helped with activities this summer, including the host families and Akemi’s language students.

Elizabeth’s 10 Mile Run in Portsmouth

posted in: Fundraising

Much of Aid For Japan’s ability to help the orphans of the 2011 tsunami/earthquake is through the work of volunteers and fundraisers.

Grassroots initiatives help to raise funds so that the charity can continue its vital work.

Elizabeth Morgan is one of those supporters who was inspired to help when reading about Aid For Japan’s mission. As a result, she is planning to run 10 miles for Aid For Japan this coming October. “I am running 10 miles along the Portsmouth coast” comments Elizabeth, “a running route I know well as I have suffered it before!!!”

Aid For Japan extends its thanks to Elizabeth and wishes her all the best for October!

You can donate to Elizabeth’s fundraising efforts through her JustGiving page here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ellerunsforjapanaid

Aid For Japan also welcomes donations any time through our dedicated Donations page: http://www.aidforjapan.co.uk/donations/

Japanese Club Fundraiser

posted in: Fundraising, News

Students at Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls in Elstree recently staged a Japanese cultural event to raise funds for Aid For Japan.

Some students at the school have formed a Japanese Club that regularly stages activities for the younger pupils on aspects of Japanese culture. This includes language lessons, origami and presentations on anime.

Earlier this month, the students ran a sakura-themed cafe at the school. The event featured a handcrafted sakura tree, sakura-themed decorations and the students even wore pink and white clothing to fit in with the theme.

Entering into the spirit of things, the school’s caterers prepared pancakes, biscuits and cupcakes with cherry blossom icing for the cafe. But the students also sold authentic Japanese sweets, such as Pocky and Hello Panda.

The cafe event was such a success that the students sold out halfway through the lunch hour! As a result, the event raised £149 for Aid For Japan.


Aid For Japan would like to express our grateful thanks to Menaka and the students of Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls.

Paul Algar 1943 – 2018

posted in: News

We are sad to report that one of Aid For Japan’s trustees, Paul Algar, has passed away after a long illness.

Paul was a tireless supporter of the charity and had regularly offered his services at many of Aid For Japan’s fundraising events. For those that attended these events, Paul was a gracious and welcoming presence who would often be seen manning the entry desk or merchandise tables.

Paul was also a regular attendee at Bunkasai Club, Aid For Japan’s weekly English/Japanese Social Club.

He also assisted charity founder Akemi Solloway Tanaka in her many tasks and responsibilities. Paul’s kindness and willingness to help was always appreciated and his loyalty to Akemi and to Aid For Japan was a vital part of the charity’s strength.

We all appreciate Paul’s warm and kind help to the orphans and the loss of his presence at Aid For Japan will be keenly felt by all.

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