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The Ibuki Project

December, 2012 - Many traditional and historical buildings in Tohoku were lost during the 2011 tsunami. Some of the surviving buildings have also been destroyed as a result of a systematic clearing of debris and rubble. IDRO Japan is working in collaboration with other NPOS in the area to save one grand building in the Ohara-hama area of the Oshika Hanto.

The IBUKI project is working to preserve an old traditional folk house originally built in the 1930s, with an attached storage house (Kura), built in 1897. Surround by 1000 square meters of gardens and a koi pond, the IBUKI house has 180 square meters of floor space.
IDRO Japan is working with the IBUKI project to raise the funds necessary to not only restore the property, but also to work with the local community in how to best use the facility.

The owners of the property have agreed to sell the property to the IBUKI project, instead of the city. It is their wish to see the property saved and utilized by the community. A task force has been organized with representatives from the community,
Open Japan, Human Shield-Kobe, IDRO Japan and various individuals with the aim of creating a multi-purpose community center that will honor and respect the original architectural integrity of the IBUKI house, as well as provide the community with a place for gathering and community events.

The IBUKI project is still in the early stages, with fund raising a primary goal.
IDRO Japan will continue to post updates and news of the project here on the website, as well as IDRO Japan's blog and on Facebook. If you are interested in helping out, please email us at and we will add you to a special IBUKI project mailing list for more up-to-date information.


IDRO Japan's Volunteer Carpenters Assist Tohoku

A new Yagura Tower for one Tohoku community's OBON celebration

July 2012 - August in Japan is centered around one event, Obon; the traditional
time to honor the spirits of one's ancestors, welcoming them back to
the house through a series of rituals, one of which is Bon-Odori. In
the Tsunami on March 11th, 2011 the Bon-Odori yagura, a festival tower
used by the people of one Tohoku community, Fukiura, was washed away
along with the lives of a number of village inhabitants.  Although it
would have been nice for the people of Fukiura to celebrate Bon Odori
in 2011, dealing with the grief of lost friends and loved ones
superseded joy, and the horrifying reality around them precluded

In order for the residents of Fukiura to celebrate Obon as in years
IDRO Japan built a new yagura tower to use for the celebration,
and the Obon of many years to come.  The tower was built entirely of
sturdy Hinoki (cypress) with all traditional joinery and was assembled
on site in time for the rehearsals on August 6th.

Taiko drum stands for Ogino-Hama Day Care and Pre-School

November 2012 - IDRO Japan organized a few local Kyoto carpenters to build 3 taiko drum sets for the Ogino-Hama Day Care and Pre-school in Tohoku. The stands were built using traditional joinery so they can be dis-assembled for storage. The stands were shipped to the school in time for the children to being their rehearsals for their annual festival.

For more news on IDRO Japan and it's projects, check out the IDRO Japan News page

IDRO Japan was there to assist and is still helping out

IDRO Japan is proud to say it assisted where it could. Working in tandem with other NPOs, IDRO Japan directed and organized volunteers to travel to the Tohoku region and assist in the recovery. Thank you to all who have contributed financially, morally and with their time and effort. Below is a list of some of IDRO Japan's accomplishments.

  • Distributed initial post disaster relief supplies.
  • Distributed carpentry tools and power equipment.
  • Distributed electrical appliances, refrigerators, microwaves, electric fans and washing machines.
  • Demolished and repaired damaged buildings and homes.
  • Distributed and or installed 50 propane water heaters.
  • Assisted in preparing the town of Kitsunezaki for winter with heaters, household furnishings and bedding.
  • Remodeled and made operable several small factories.
  • Built a bathhouse in Funakoshi.
  • Built one small building to house the Nagatsura Fishing Cooperative.
  • Organized thousands of hours of volunteer labor.
  • Tore down dangerous buildings in several communities.
  • Cut down and disposed of trees killed by salt poisoning.
  • Cleared kilometers of coastline of debris.
  • Repaired and rebuilt the shrine gates in Onosaki.
  • Restored stone monuments.
  • Shored and sandbagged riversides and drainage areas.
  • Assisted in the moving of homes and businesses.
  • Assisted in the preservation of factory equipment.
  • Repaired water-damaged furniture for private homes.
  • Repaired doors and windows, replacing glass and screen in several communities.
  • Removed and rebuilt floors in dozens of homes.
  • Removed countless tons of mud and debris from various locations.
  • Assisted in the restoration of Koganeyama Shrine on Kinkazan Island.
  • Distributed mosquito nets, mosquito coils, insect repellant, over-the-counter medicines, water and a multitude of other daily necessities.