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【JPN Relief-45】 Iwate : Home Partner Story (1)
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In Ofunato, Iwate, Habitat Japan operates a project to rehabilitate individual houses damaged in the disaster. Mr. Choshichi Yoshida is one of the beneficiaries of this project.
On March 11th, when the earthquake struck, Mr.Yoshida thought there would be no tsunami as the sea was so calm. But his son recognized the critical situation that they were facing, and brought his parents to the evacuation center nearby. The tsunami even reached their feet at the center, and people let children evacuate further on to the roof top. Mr. Yoshida remembered the day and said, "at that moment I didn't feel any fear. But now I think I was actually in a great shock".
Next day, he went back to the place where used to be his home. The main house was drifted away by tsunami, and the terraced house next to it had severe damage on its ground floor. He covered up broken walls by plywood and plastic sheeting, and slept on the second floor. He got a wood stove from one of his acquaintances and managed to pick up a sink for kitchen and metal flames for window from the mountain of debris. He also found a source of water supply in mountain nearby and had pipes lay on his own. As handy as he may be, he was actually struggling to repair his house by himself.
One day in January, he found out about Habitat Japan's program on Tokai Shimpo newspaper. With having its cost partially supported by this program, the rehabilitation started on April. The long house style structure had a very low heat detainment; the walls were installed to better insulate the house. Damaged floors were repaired to place tatami mats on top for a finish, then the rehabilitation process was completed in May.
Mr. Yoshida said "I am a fisherman and do not want to leave this house near the sea. Thanks to everyone's assistance, I was able to get the daily life I used to have back".
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2012.01.11 10 Months after the Disaster
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