More donations are pouring in from Japan to aid the Marianas community in its recovery from Super Typhoon Yutu, which hit the islands in October 2018.
The Tokyo-Koenji Awaodori Association, named as an honorary Marianas tourism ambassador in 2017, recently collected nearly $4,000 for relief efforts. The donation was personally delivered by Saipan Awaodori leader Misako Kamata to the Marianas Visitors Authority office on Saipan on Dec. 13, 2018.
“When Mr. Yukihiro Iwanami and the Tokyo-Koenji Awaodori Association learned of the devastating typhoon that happened, they felt so bad for the people of CNMI,” said Kamata in an email to MVA managing director Christopher A. Concepcion. “Feeling honored by the MVA’s designation as tourism ambassadors, they felt a sense of seriousness to help. Even with this unfortunate incident, the free-spirited and happy people of the CNMI still manage to smile and look at the brighter side of life and will overcome these difficulties soon.”
On Nov. 10 and 24, the association set up donation boxes at Autumn Awaodori Festivals in Tokyo and appealed to members and the audience for help, collecting $3,800 in donations.
“We are very grateful to the Tokyo-Koenji Awaodori Association for their support to our recovery as a community,” said Concepcion in receiving the donation. “This funding will go to various charitable organizations in the Marianas who are helping victims of Yutu on Tinian and Saipan.”
Several other donations from companies and individuals in Japan have been sent to the Marianas via the MVA, including ¥3,000,000 from Skymark Airlines, ¥1,000,000 from Access Inc., and $1,000 from honorary Marianas tourism ambassador and former Japan consul to the Commonwealth Toshio Matsumura.
To mark the recovery of the islands after the typhoon, MVA and the community will host the #MarianasSTRONG Yearend Celebration on Dec. 29, 2018, from 5pm to 10pm at the Paseo de Marianas pedestrian mall in Garapan. The festivities will include live entertainment, food sales, and free children’s games. The Yutu 5K Holiday Fun Run will be held at 5pm at the same location. Donations will be accepted for continued typhoon recovery efforts. For more information, visit The Marianas Calendar at www.mymarianass.com. (MVA)