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May Community Services Feature: APRICOT

Happy Golden Week! Among the many holidays clustered into this late spring holiday, Children’s Day (May 5th) will continue to honor the happiness and health of children. An organization that has been working towards that goal since the aftermath of the March 11 earthquakes is APRICOT NPO, also known a the Allied Psychotherapy Relief Initiative for the Children of Tohoku.

APRICOT’s MISSION

APRICOT’s sole mission is to raise awareness and funding for children with mental health illnesses formed from the March 11 natural disaster to receive long-term mental health care and resources. According to APRICOT, a recent government survey suggested 1 in 3 children in Tohoku are already suffering from mental illnesses such as anxiety, depression, and possible early developments of PTSD, to name a few. The head of the NPO, Andrew Grimes, focuses on making sure the world sees how important it is for children to overcome this devastating ripple effect that extends seven years and beyond. Below are a few examples of some of APRICOT’s work:

APRICOT Collage

Mr. Grimes isn’t alone in his journey, the members of APRICOT are made up of a group of like minded humanitarians who volunteer their time to make sure every yen donated goes towards other mental health NPOs working directly with children of Tohoku and other cities across Japan affected by the earthquakes and tsunami. This is especially important for Japanese families who no longer or have never received government assistance for moving forward with their lives. These volunteers also help with hosting community rebuilding events and one-to-one treatment sessions for many with mental illnesses.

APRICOT, like other organizations, are faced with raising the funds required to help children receive the therapy they most desperately need. So far, funding has been made possible through a few corporate donations. Corporations or ‘APRICOT NPO Angels’ are companies who regularly support APRICOT and put them one step closer to their goal. One such group is the UK and Japan social media firm Mantra Media run by Johnny and Jason Pawlik who are lifetime supporters of APRICOT. They, alongside Josh Stinton of Outspire are preparing Josh on his cycling journey across the entirety of Japan for awareness of children’s mental health. The proceeds of his journey will go to APRICOT.  

Nonetheless, one lifetime member is not enough. The need is still great. Mr. Grimes invites anyone who is interested in their company or organization in becoming an APRICOT NPO Angel, please send an email to teamapricotchildren@gmail.com.

How Can You Help APRICOT?

If you are interested in assisting APRICOT individually or with a friend there are few ways you can lend a hand!

  • Are you great at organizing fundraising events? APRICOT is currently looking for someone who can organize such events in the Tokyo area for the international community.
  • Monthly or one-time Individual online donations are also possible via www.apricotchildren.org/donations
  • Follow Josh Stinton on his cycling journey across Japan in support for APRICOT here:
    • Instagram: @joshoutspire
    • Twitter: @Joshstinton
  • Follow APRICOT on their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/apricotchildren

Other Organizations who focus on on the well being of children:

Mirai no Mori                                                       Shine on Kids

Mirai no Mori LogoShine on Kids Logo

 

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