By Lisa Matsumoto, Public Relations & Communications Intern
Harassment is not an easy topic to grasp. It can have so many different faces said, Sachi Nakajima on March 9th, the day following International Women’s Day– a day to celebrate our victories, but also to stand together and support each other. Sachi is the founder of Resilience, a nonprofit organization supporting victims of domestic violence and abuse in Japan.
Sachi is a survivor. She came up with the idea of running a drop-in class for victims of harassment in 2003. What she initially thought would be a side project quickly grew over the years, and now she gives over 100 talks a year all over Japan! From small-scale workshops to training hospital personnel and prefectural police to coaching juvenile delinquents, Sachi believes that sharing victims’ stories and providing a platform for questions and exchanges gradually offers a path towards safer lives and greater awareness about harassment. Although Sachi Nakajima herself still battles the effects of her own story to this day, she works tirelessly to support victims and to share their stories with the goal of contributing to a better tomorrow in Japan. It is certainly not an easy task. But there are encouraging signs, such as more and more people attending Sachi’s events, speaking up about this topic, and getting more involved – including FEW’s own members.
For example, Sarajean Rossitto is not only widely engaged in non-profit work supporting the marginalized in Japan, but she is the one who first connected Resilience to FEW. She has hosted marches in hopes of spreading awareness of the reality of domestic violence. Last year, she produced the play “Seven” in Tokyo about domestic violence and abuse illustrated through seven stories of women. Sarah Furuya has also been making a point to involve Resilience at her clothes swaps to help women who have been able to leave their abusive relationships to start a new life with new clothes, while also offering a platform to discuss the topic among a large group of women. And Jennifer Shinkai has raised money through sponsors by participating in the recent Tokyo Marathon for Resilience, helping them distribute booklets and host peer support groups and presentations. These are just a few of the many ways that you can also support Resilience’s cause.
What can you do if you know someone is experiencing an abusive relationship? It is hard to determine what is right and, as Sachi stated, there is “no specific formula to fix everything.” However, you can let them know that you will be there for them if they need anything, that they have somewhere to go, someone to depend on and that you will be waiting for them. Having said that, listening to abuse stories is emotionally draining, according to Sachi. You should not deal with it alone and get a professional involved to help.
We hope to see more of Sachi and the Resilience team’s work, hope more action will be taken, and hope that we will all #BeBoldForChange. You can plant a seed anywhere. Raising awareness starts with you.
Learn more about Resilience here: http://resilience.jp/
Q&A with tailor Melanie Uematsu
Leading up to our upcoming monthly meeting on ‘One Size Doesn’t Fit All,’ we’re featuring a Q&A with our speaker, tailor Melanie Uematsu. The Q&A is modeled on the Proust Questionnaire, designed to reveal insights into the respondent’s personality. Hear about women’s love-hate relationship with the fashion industry, why one style doesn’t fit all, and how […]Published on 28th June 2017
June Meeting Recap: A Personal Journey: Japan’s War Brides
By Lisa Matsumoto, Public Relations & Communications Intern Members and guests alike joined FEW’s monthly meeting on June 8th to hear the story of Japanese war brides, a story often overlooked and untold. We welcomed Lucy Craft, a filmmaker and former FEW member in the 80s, to reveal their hidden stories. As a daughter of […]Published on 28th June 2017
May 2017 Women’s Start-up Club Recap: Location Independent
The FEW Women’s Start-Up Club (WSC) attracted its largest audience on May 31, 2017, with three panelists sharing how their online-based businesses are succeeding, independent of location. Below are summaries of their presentations. Be sure to check out their sites for more inspiration! The next WSC event is “Mentoring and Networking” on Thursday, June 29. […]Published on 22nd June 2017
FEW Community 2017 Survey – We’d like to hear from you!
FEW has launched its biennial FEW Community 2017 Survey, and we invite all FEW members and friends to take part! The survey will take no more than 10 minutes to complete. By sharing your feedback, comments and suggestions on FEW programs and events as well as your past and future experiences with FEW, you will help us ensure that we continue to meet our […]Published on 20th June 2017
Event Recap: Mirai no Mori Back to Nature Outdoor Cooking Program
FEW members and friends spent a fantastic day as volunteers at Mirai no Mori’s Back to Nature Program on June 10th. On the outskirts of Tokyo, in beautiful and green Mitake, we met with the staff and volunteer teams of Mirai no Mori and a Saitama children’s home to support a program designed to empower […]Published on 16th June 2017
All Levels Yoga Class by FURLA Yoga
Join us for a relaxing Sunday afternoon yoga session and get energized for the week ahead! Noriko from FURLA Yoga, a FEW Strategic Partner, will teach a hatha yoga class in English for all levels.
FEW & Mirai no Mori Concert for a Cause
We invite all music lovers to join us for a special concert at 2ND HALF in Takadanobaba and enjoy a fun evening filled with great music for a great cause-- supporting FEW Community Services Strategic Partner Mirai no Mori's Back to Nature Program!
One Size Doesn't Fit All
Join us for the last meeting of the current FEW year as we hear from Melanie Uematsu, a tailor, on women’s love-hate relationship with the fashion industry, why one style doesn’t fit all, and how we can solve this issue as individual consumers.